If you are already thinking about the reading list you will assign to your students next fall, congratulations– you are way ahead of Missy and me! But let me offer one piece of advice as you assemble your curriculum: Assign children's picture storybooks to all of your students in the first few weeks of the school year.
Holding my breath, suffocated by the burning odor of bleach, I took up my sponge against the scarred and yellowed linoleum of my first apartment’s kitchen. The war raged long. Arms weary, knees bruised, I scrubbed like my life depended on it. And when I rinsed the host of suds at the end of a long afternoon…the floor did not look any cleaner.
“Write me a story,” I said to the girls in my junior high composition class. “It is due next Wednesday.” That was the extent of the assignment I gave them. No limits, no rules, no guidance – nothing. Admittedly, I was new – as a first year teacher, I had no way of knowing what I was in for, or how grave an error I had just made...
I recently decided to augment my reading of the classics with some current fiction by reading a Pulitzer Prize winner at night before bed. I embarked on this venture with Donna Tartt’s 2014 winner, The Goldfinch. The book’s reviews had me ready for a detective story extraordinaire, as did its illustrious awards and reviews.