Monday, August 28, 2023

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? 08/28/2023

 

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? From Picture Books to YA! 

It's Monday! What are you Reading? is a weekly blog hop hosted by Kellee and Ricki of Unleashing ReadersThe original IMWAYR, with an adult literature focus, was started by Sheila at Book Journeys and is now hosted by Kathryn at The Book Date.

Head over to Unleashing Readers to join the link up and share your reads from this week!


Monday, August 21, 2023

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? 08/21/2023

 

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? From Picture Books to YA! 

It's Monday! What are you Reading? is a weekly blog hop hosted by Kellee and Ricki of Unleashing ReadersThe original IMWAYR, with an adult literature focus, was started by Sheila at Book Journeys and is now hosted by Kathryn at The Book Date.

Head over to Unleashing Readers to join the link up and share your reads from this week!


Monday, August 14, 2023

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? 08/14/2023

 

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? From Picture Books to YA! 

It's Monday! What are you Reading? is a weekly blog hop hosted by Kellee and Ricki of Unleashing ReadersThe original IMWAYR, with an adult literature focus, was started by Sheila at Book Journeys and is now hosted by Kathryn at The Book Date.

Head over to Unleashing Readers to join the link up and share your reads from this week!


Monday, August 7, 2023

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? 08/07/2023

 

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? From Picture Books to YA! 

It's Monday! What are you Reading? is a weekly blog hop I co-host with Kellee and Ricki from Unleashing ReadersThe original IMWAYR, with an adult literature focus, was started by Sheila at Book Journeys and is now hosted by Kathryn at The Book Date.

It's a great way to share what you're reading and get recommendations. We encourage you to write your own post sharing what you’re reading, link up below, leave a comment, and support other IMWAYR bloggers by visiting and commenting on at least three of the other linked blogs.

Last Week's Adventures:
Last week I finished listening to Life in Five Senses by Gretchen Rubin and I highly recommend it. I started listening to A Very Typical Family by Sierra Godfrey and it’s interesting so far.

This Week's Adventures:

This week I have a very big announcement…I’m looking forward to new reading adventures but I won’t be sharing my weekly reading here any more. I’m not sure what the future holds for Teach Mentor Texts but I do know that I rarely post book reviews and mentor texts ideas and I find myself reading more and more for my own learning and growth and entertainment than reading kidlit. I pride myself on being an educator who reads what her students read and I will continue to do that but I’m also super passionate about being an entrepreneur and nurturing my own writing life at the same time. 

In reflecting on all of this, I’ve realized that my energy has shifted and it’s time for a pause in blogging here at Teach Mentor Texts. I’m so extremely grateful for all the fun Teach Mentor Texts has been! I have grown in so many ways thanks to this blog and I appreciate all the connections I have made with other educators, librarians, writers, authors, illustrators…the people memories bring me the most joy. Blogging with Kellee Moye was an especially huge highlight for me. She now blogs with Rick Ginsberg at Unleashing Readers and we have co-hosted IMWAYR. Starting next week, you can go to their blog to read their awesome book reviews and get recommendations and join the link up. It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? Is not going away! I know they will carry on this awesome tradition. 

Thank you so much for seeing me, appreciating what I have to say, and sharing your reading and writing passion and knowledge over the years! I will forever be grateful. 

If you’d like to stay connected, I’ll be blogging over at Story Exploratory. You can read my first post here. Another great way to stay connected with me is to sign up for my newsletter here. I’m also on Instagram at @jvincentwrites and @storyexploratory. 

What are you reading this week? 
Link up below and check out other blogs to see what they're reading!
To help build our community and support other bloggers,
we ask that you comment on at least three other blogs before you.
Also, if you tweet about your Monday post, don't forget to use #IMWAYR!


Friday, August 4, 2023

Teachers Write! Weekly Check In #4

It’s week four and the end of Teachers Write and our summer of poetry and play!

It took me all week to get back into the swing of things. Not only was I transitioning out of vacation mode but I was also starting to get back into school mode. Not a lot, I do my best to enjoy my summer time because I know once school starts, I’ll be all in. But this week was August and I felt the call to start thinking about school again.

Here are a couple of pictures of some really peaceful moments: I rode my Vespa to early morning yoga classes and went for walks in nature. These times to connect with ourselves and to explore what that feels like are so important. 


While I was busy holding on to summer, I loved Nikki Grimes suggestion to pay attention to word choice and Margarita Engle’s offer to think about line breaks. My Teachers Write writing has been inspired from the guest authors so I decided to play with the paragraph above with Nikki and Margarita’s advice in mind. 

The Summer Switch

August hits and

it’s time

to get back 
into the swing of things

out of vacation mode 

back 
into school mode

I know 
once school starts
I’ll be all in 

I’ll enjoy the time I still have as much as I can

but I can’t ignore
it’s August and 

it’s time

to start thinking about school again

That’s what I accomplished this week! It feels really good to be able to write about what I’m feeling and then to flex my creativity and turn it into a poem. I know how important it is to be a teacher who writes but I also truly love how powerful it is to be a human who writes. I have a feeling you feel it too. Isn’t it awesome?!

Teachers Write Weekly Check-In Agreements:
1. We respect each other and the type of writing we each do.
2. We are positive and encourage each other.
3. We recognize and maintain this as a safe, inclusive environment for all.
4. We have fun!

Ideas for today in the comments section:
How did you do this week? Did you meet your weekly goal(s)?
What was the pit of your week? (The hardest part, the non-fun part?)
What was the peak of your week? (The best part, the most-fun part?)

My Weekly Check-In: I had high hopes for this week but I didn’t add words to my work in progress. I’m not sure what this means other than I took time to care for myself and that was important. I love writing and I wrote everyday, I just didn’t work on adding words to my manuscript. It’s there. I know it’s waiting for me. I know it knows I love it. What I needed most this week was to get back to my morning pages and my daily writing practice for me, as a way to connect with myself. I had take a little break from morning pages but it really is a lovely practice that I enjoy so I made sure to sit and spend time with my thoughts everyday this week and it was really lovely. I feel grounded and grateful and ready to start to shift back into schoo mode. I think because I know it is going to get really real here soon, I needed to really take time for myself this week so I’m glad I did. I often will write and pull cards to see what message comes up and that was really powerful for me this week. 

The best part of the week were those moments when I really let my thoughts flow. I felt connected to myself and like I could really hear what my inner being had to say and that was really lovely. I’m bummed I didn’t work on my work in progress but quite honestly, the week moved so fast and all of a sudden it was Friday and time to work on this recap. So I guess it’s good that I wasn’t hard on myself for not working on my ms, it just sort of went that way!

Thank you for joining in on the Teachers Write fun! And for stopping by to check in and share your writing life with me and other Teachers Write participants. Being part of this community has truly been life changing for me and I’m so grateful to have gotten to be part of Teachers Write for all these years! 

Monday, July 31, 2023

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? 07/31/2023

 

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? From Picture Books to YA! 

It's Monday! What are you Reading? is a weekly blog hop I co-host with Kellee and Ricki from Unleashing ReadersThe original IMWAYR, with an adult literature focus, was started by Sheila at Book Journeys and is now hosted by Kathryn at The Book Date.

It's a great way to share what you're reading and get recommendations. We encourage you to write your own post sharing what you’re reading, link up below, leave a comment, and support other IMWAYR bloggers by visiting and commenting on at least three of the other linked blogs.

Last Week's Adventures:
I listened to most of Life in Five Senses but didn’t quite finish it. I had a great time in Costa Rica so I didn’t get much reading in other than my audiobook.

This Week's Adventures:

This week I’ll finish listening to Life in Five Senses and then, believe it or not, I haven’t read all of Look Both Ways by Jason Reynolds’s so I’d like to read it. 

What are you reading this week? 
Link up below and check out other blogs to see what they're reading!
To help build our community and support other bloggers,
we ask that you comment on at least three other blogs before you.
Also, if you tweet about your Monday post, don't forget to use #IMWAYR!


Friday, July 28, 2023

Teachers Write! Weekly Check In #3

Welcome to week three of Teachers Write: Poetry and Play! As I mentioned last week, I was in Costa Rica all week. It was absolutely gorgeous and I’ had a great time.  

I wasn’t sure what my schedule would be and I wanted to leave my technology behind (besides my phone for pictures! (and calling home)) BUT I did want to make sure I still played with poetry this week. On the plane home, I looked at the prompts and decided to write a poem using the exercise KA Holt shared.

Here is my trusty little Nalgene water bottle from REI that I took on my trip with me.

Here are the taboo words I came up with:


And then here is the poem I wrote:

Now it’s your turn to share! Did you try one of the exercises or go in your own direction?

Teachers Write Weekly Check-In Agreements:
1. We respect each other and the type of writing we each do.
2. We are positive and encourage each other.
3. We recognize and maintain this as a safe, inclusive environment for all.
4. We have fun!

Ideas for today in the comments section:
How did you do this week? Did you meet your weekly goal(s)?
What was the pit of your week? (The hardest part, the non-fun part?)
What was the peak of your week? (The best part, the most-fun part?)

My Weekly Check-In: I knew I wasn’t going to be able to make progress towards adding words to my WIP this week but I also knew I was going to make some awesome memories. In my workshops and coaching with Story Exploratory, I talk a lot about writers exploring. We need to get out and explore, to try new things and experience life, so we have things to write about. Trips like this give me a lot to think about and write about - like a blue clay mask, a catamaran sunset tour, a drum circle, and a cactus labyrinth. I had a great time gathering up words in my writer’s notebook that I can incorporate into my writing. 

We have one more week of Teachers Write! My goal for this week is to really zone in on my WIP and add words again. If I could at least double my word count from week two and add at least 1,200 words, that would be great. Let’s see if I can do that…or more!

Honestly, it makes me feel so great to know there are teacher writers out there! Thank you for sharing your writing life with me and other Teachers Write campers. I love that we make time to write. It truly matters. Not only are you nurturing your own writing life, you are better equipped to nurture the student writers you work with. That’s pretty awesome. 

Monday, July 24, 2023

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? 07/24/2023

 

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? From Picture Books to YA! 

It's Monday! What are you Reading? is a weekly blog hop I co-host with Kellee and Ricki from Unleashing ReadersThe original IMWAYR, with an adult literature focus, was started by Sheila at Book Journeys and is now hosted by Kathryn at The Book Date.

It's a great way to share what you're reading and get recommendations. We encourage you to write your own post sharing what you’re reading, link up below, leave a comment, and support other IMWAYR bloggers by visiting and commenting on at least three of the other linked blogs.

Last Week's Adventures:
I read more of Playbook by Kwame Alexander with my son and then my library hold of Life in Five Senses by Gretchen Rubin came in so I’ve been listening to it. I adore Gretchen Rubin and her work and this book really has me thinking about how we slow down and pay attention. It’s a great supplement to my Teachers Write Poetry and Play work!

This Week's Adventures:

This week I plan to continue listening to Life in Five Senses and then I’m taking one week to really have some fun and I picked up The Seven Year Slip by Ashley Poston that I’m excited to enjoy.

If you’re a teacher who writes, make sure you check out my Teachers Write Weekly Check In posts!

What are you reading this week? 
Link up below and check out other blogs to see what they're reading!
To help build our community and support other bloggers,
we ask that you comment on at least three other blogs before you.
Also, if you tweet about your Monday post, don't forget to use #IMWAYR!


Friday, July 21, 2023

Teachers Write! Weekly Check In #2

I’m excited to hear how your second week of Teachers Write: Poetry and Play went! 

Our challenge this week was to look for haikus in the wild and when I think of haikus, I think of my friend Marcie Flinchum Atkins. She’s a librarian and writer in Virginia. You can check out her books here and her poetry resources here. We’ve been supporting each other as writers for years now and I’m excited to tell you why haikus make me think of her! 

Here we are in Baltimore in 2019 at the NCTE Annual Convention.

Marcie writes picture books and novels and poetry. You can sign up for her poetry postcards and she’ll send you snail mail haikus! They always make me smile when I find one in my mailbox. Here are some I’ve received from her:


Marcie and I enjoy talking about process and she’ll often share behind-the-scenes posts on her Instagram at @marciefatkins. She goes on walks and takes photos that inspire her writing. Since Kate and Loree Griffin Burns asked us to look for inspiration all around us, I went through my camera roll to see what has sparked my attention lately. 

Last Sunday, I went down to Botanical Cafe in Chicago to meet up with my Chicago Latina Writers group. I was about ten minutes away when I turned my head and spotted a huge, larger than life skeleton sitting in the parking lot of bar/restaurant. I had to see it up close so I made a u-turn and parked so I could take a picture. While most people are out in nature looking for inspiration, I put an urban twist on this week’s challenge. Here I am with the art and my Chicago Latina Writers group. 
Here’s the brainstorming I did:
And then I went back to Canva and here’s my picture and my haiku! If you’d like to print it, you can find it here.

I didn’t expect to use Canva this summer for Teachers Write but it’s been a super fun tool and I use it with students as well. You can get a free account or sign up for an education account. If you use Canva or try it out, you can share your creation in the comments or share a link to your creation in the comments. I’d love to see what you create!
 
And now for the Weekly Check In!

Teachers Write Weekly Check-In Agreements:
1. We respect each other and the type of writing we each do.
2. We are positive and encourage each other.
3. We recognize and maintain this as a safe, inclusive environment for all.
4. We have fun!

Ideas for today in the comments section:
What are your goals for Teachers Write?
How did you do this week? Did you meet your weekly goal(s)?
What was the pit of your week? (The hardest part, the non-fun part?)
What was the peak of your week? (The best part, the most-fun part?)

My Weekly Check-In: My goals for this week was to play with the prompts and to add some words to my current work in progress (WIP). I had fun with my urban twist on the haiku challenge! AND I opened up my WIP and actually added words. While I only added a little over 600 words, it was nice to reconnect with my manuscript and see what I have and what I can add in. 

This upcoming week I will be at a yoga retreat in Costa Rica. I’m looking forward to unwinding and relaxing and really letting myself be in the moment. I have a poetry workbook to take with me so I’ll continue to play with poetry but I’m not letting myself take my iPad so I know I won’t be adding words to my WIP. 

I hope you have a fantastic week and I can’t wait to hear all about it!

Monday, July 17, 2023

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? 07/17/2023

 

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? From Picture Books to YA! 

It's Monday! What are you Reading? is a weekly blog hop I co-host with Kellee and Ricki from Unleashing ReadersThe original IMWAYR, with an adult literature focus, was started by Sheila at Book Journeys and is now hosted by Kathryn at The Book Date.

It's a great way to share what you're reading and get recommendations. We encourage you to write your own post sharing what you’re reading, link up below, leave a comment, and support other IMWAYR bloggers by visiting and commenting on at least three of the other linked blogs.

Last Week's Adventures:
I tried reading Slob this week…but it’s just so hard for me to read and I don’t think today’s kids would find it believable. I might be wrong but I was hoping it would work for book clubs this year and I just don’t think it will so I’m abandoning it. 

I did read the graphic novel Victory. Stand!: Raising My Fist for Justice by Tommie Smith, Dawud Anyabwile, and Derrick Barnes and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I’m also rereading The Playbook by Kwame Alexander with my younger son. We’ve had good discussions so far!

This Week's Adventures:

This week I’m planning to zone in on my writing because Teachers Write is here! You can read my Weekly Check In post here and be sure to visit Kate Messner’s blog to follow along with her resources. 

What are you reading this week? 
Link up below and check out other blogs to see what they're reading!
To help build our community and support other bloggers,
we ask that you comment on at least three other blogs before you.
Also, if you tweet about your Monday post, don't forget to use #IMWAYR!


Friday, July 14, 2023

Teachers Write! Weekly Check In #1

Welcome to Teachers Write 2023 and the Weekly Check-In! I'm Jen Vincent and writing is my jam! Teachers who write make the very best teachers of writing and Teachers Write has been a huge part of my journey as a writer.

If you’re here, you get it! Whether you already write consistently or you are here to dust off your notebook or you have an inkling that this will be a game changer, you understand that being able to walk the walk matters when it comes to writing instruction.

A quick intro to me! I’ve hosted the Weekly Check In for Teachers Write with Kate Messner since we started Teachers Write in 2012. I've written young adult novels and picture books and essays. Most recently, I’m working on writing about what it looks like to live the life of a writer and how we can share this with students.

I'm a 6-8 Language Arts teacher for Bannockburn School in Bannockburn, Illinois and I’ve been in a variety of roles in my 21 years of teaching. Beyond school, I love being outdoors, hiking, kayaking, paddle boarding, practicing yoga, and hanging out with my husband (also a teacher!) and our two teenage sons (yikes!).


This year, our focus is Poetry and Play and this week, I played around with how I might use Laura Ruby’s suggestion to use a hermit crab poem to write slant and share why being a teacher who writes matters.

Yesterday, I met my friend Carrie Thomas, a high school English teacher friend who writes, at a local coffee shop and I snapped a picture of the menu.


I’m passionate about supporting teachers as writers because it matters. It matters because when we write, we are better able to connect with students and confer with them from an authentic place. Living the life of a writer means navigating the ups and downs and being able to say to a student writer, “That’s happened to me before. You know what I tried?” I wondered, how could I use the menu as a mentor text to share some ways that being a teacher who writes matters?

I started with a blank page in my notepad, recreating the menu with a Teachers Write spin, playing with the words and trying out ideas.

Then I switched over to Canva and had fun designing my own Teachers Write Specialties menu. If you’d like a PDF version to print, you can find it here.


I’m absolutely thrilled that you are here and looking forward to hearing how your first week of Teachers Write: Poetry and Play went! 

Here’s how the Weekly Check In goes. I share a bit of my writing life and I invite you to reflect on your writing life this week and share the ups and downs in the comments. It’s been pretty much the same since 2012 when we first started and if you’d like to see the resources I’ve shared over the years, this link will take you to all my previous Teachers Write posts, starting with the most recent first.

Teachers Write Weekly Check-In Agreements:
1. We respect each other and the type of writing we each do.
2. We are positive and encourage each other.
3. We recognize and maintain this as a safe, inclusive environment for all.
4. We have fun!

Ideas for today in the comments section:
What are your goals for Teachers Write?
How did you do this week? Did you meet your weekly goal(s)?
What was the pit of your week? (The hardest part, the non-fun part?)
What was the peak of your week? (The best part, the most-fun part?)

My Weekly Check-In: My goals for Teachers Write this year are to follow along with the prompts from Kate and our fabulous guest authors and to let myself play and explore. I do have a WIP (work in progress) that is currently at 21,244 words and I’d love to add to my word count and possibly finish my first draft before school starts in August…but I’m giving myself a lot of grace and going with the flow. 

This week I had fun blending Kate’s idea for found poems and Laura Ruby’s hermit crab poems suggestion. BUT I did not work on my WIP until I needed to write this blog post and realized I should at least open it during week 1. Let’s see if I can get some words added by next week’s check-in!

Give yourself a huge pat on the back for being part of Teachers Write this summer! Yay you! I‘m excited to connect with you and hear how Teachers Write is going so far. If you have any questions or if I can help with anything, please let me know.

Monday, July 10, 2023

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading/ 07/10/2023

 

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? From Picture Books to YA! 

It's Monday! What are you Reading? is a weekly blog hop I co-host with Kellee and Ricki from Unleashing ReadersThe original IMWAYR, with an adult literature focus, was started by Sheila at Book Journeys and is now hosted by Kathryn at The Book Date.

It's a great way to share what you're reading and get recommendations. We encourage you to write your own post sharing what you’re reading, link up below, leave a comment, and support other IMWAYR bloggers by visiting and commenting on at least three of the other linked blogs.

Last Week's Adventures:
Last week I switched gears and started reading Slob by Ellen Potter. I’m choosing some new titles for book clubs and this is one my librarian recommended. I’m still listening to Atomic Habits

This Week's Adventures:

This week I‘ll continue reading Slob and then I hope to get to This is Marketing by Seth Godin. I’ll keep listening to Atomic Habits and I also want to reread Jenny Han’s The Summer I Turne Pretty. The second season of The Summer I Turned Pretty comes out this week and it has me nostalgic for Jenny Han books. 

As I mentioned last week, Teachers Write is back! This virtual summer writing camp for educators starts TODAY and the fun lasts through August 4th. You can sign up with Kate Messner here and she’ll send you her blog post on Mondays then be sure to check in here with me at Teacher Mentor Texts on Fridays to join in on the Weekly Check-In, a chance to connect with other writers and celebrate our progress. See you Friday!

What are you reading this week? 
Link up below and check out other blogs to see what they're reading!
To help build our community and support other bloggers,
we ask that you comment on at least three other blogs before you.
Also, if you tweet about your Monday post, don't forget to use #IMWAYR!


Monday, July 3, 2023

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? 07/03/2023

 

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? From Picture Books to YA! 

It's Monday! What are you Reading? is a weekly blog hop I co-host with Kellee and Ricki from Unleashing ReadersThe original IMWAYR, with an adult literature focus, was started by Sheila at Book Journeys and is now hosted by Kathryn at The Book Date.

It's a great way to share what you're reading and get recommendations. We encourage you to write your own post sharing what you’re reading, link up below, leave a comment, and support other IMWAYR bloggers by visiting and commenting on at least three of the other linked blogs.

Last Week's Adventures:
I have no idea what happened to the week! Isn’t summer like that sometimes? I did read Show Your Work and I started re-listening to Atomic Habits. I’m looking for nonfiction books I can use with 8th graders for book clubs. I’m hoping for books like Show Your Work and Atomic Habits instead of nonfiction like memoir or biography. I feel like I have to reread and make sure everything is middle school appropriate. If you have any suggestions for me, please share them in the comments. 

This Week's Adventures:

This week I really do hope to finish The One Thing and Crushing It so I can read This is Marketing by Seth Godin. I’ll work on continuing to listen to Atomic Habits.

Next week, Teachers Write is back for another summer! I love being part of Teachers Write. I’m passionate about supporting other educators in being writers themselves because it makes a difference for our students. I even started my own business, Story Exploratory, where I host workshops and coach writers because I also believe writing is the very best self care. Writing has changed my life in so many ways but most importantly in helping me know and love myself better. 


Teachers Write is a virtual summer writing camp for educators and will run from July 10th-August 4th. You can sign up with Kate Messner here and she’ll send you her blog post on Mondays where you’ll get a prompt and a guest kidlit author sharing ideas for you. Come here on Fridays to join in on the Weekly Check-In, a chance to connect with other writers and celebrate our progress. 

This year, the focus will be on poetry writing. Whether you write poetry or not, I know you’ll find something beneficial from participating. And if poetry really isn’t your jam, we have always thought of Teachers Write as รก la carte so you can make it what you’d like to make it. Join in as you are able and if you are working on a novel, great! If you’re working on blogging regularly, great! If you’d like to spend time with poetry, great! 

We’re here to give you the space and some resources but ultimately, we trust that you will use the accountability however you need to. I’m thrilled to be part of your journey and hope that you’ll stop in to share how it’s going so I can cheer for you. 

What are you reading this week? 
Link up below and check out other blogs to see what they're reading!
To help build our community and support other bloggers,
we ask that you comment on at least three other blogs before you.
Also, if you tweet about your Monday post, don't forget to use #IMWAYR!


It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? 08/28/2023

  It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? From Picture Books to YA!   It's Monday! What are you Reading? is a weekly blog hop hosted by Kelle...