Tuesday, March 16, 2010

March Madness: Passion is Power

These days in education it's easy to feel discouraged. Disillusioned. Powerless even. Overwhelmed with paperwork, mandates and curricular changes, we sometimes forget that WE ARE the face of literacy to so many students, day in and day out. For some, we're their only hope.

High school teacher, literacy coach and author Penny Kittle carries a message for us. Everywhere she goes, she relays this simple, encouraging reminder:

"Literacy is a magnetic attraction. And the force of the attraction is the passion of the teacher."
(August 18, 2009, keynote address, Toronto, Canada)

Penny reminds us that we have the power to charm a child into a lifelong relationship with language. We ARE reading, writing and thinking to our students. And our influence goes on and on and on.

So, show your love of reading and writing, in big doses, every day! Read with expression. Talk about your favorite genres and authors. Read aloud a recent email, note or text message you've written. Share photos of your bookshelves at home. Bring in your favorite childhood book. Fill sticky notes with literacy quotations and place them on student desks. Tell stories about how you learned to read. Make sure your students know how reading & writing have changed your life.

Don't hold back. Literacy passion is literacy power.


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