Saturday, March 25, 2017

Passionate Teachers ~ Celebrate 2017 (ten) #sol17

I believe being a writer is one of the biggest gifts you can give to your students. ~ Stacey Shubitz

This month I am participating in the Slice of Life Story Challenge.  Thanks to Two Writing Teachers for creating a space for me to share my corner of the world.

Today I am also combining my two worlds of writing by celebrating my week with Ruth Ayres

Remember what it was like when you were a child on Christmas Eve, so excited and couldn't sleep?  Or maybe it was the night before the first day of school and you are filled with anticipation of a new class of students and new ideas to implement?

That was me last night.  I came across a recorded 2016 webinar with Penny Kittle, who just happens to be one of my teacher idols.  It was one hour and 35 minutes long, but with all of the stops to write notes and "back 'em ups" to catch something brilliant she said that I missed the first time, it took me over two and a half hours to watch!  Finally at midnight (just after the Two Writing Teachers email came through) I decided I needed to go to bed.

But I couldn't sleep.  I could not turn my brain off because all these ideas and thoughts were swimming.  There is so much brilliance to share, but today I celebrate passionate teachers.

In the beginning of the webinar, she talks about passion, and this quote was one of her slides.

She explains how her passion, everything she has wanted to do, has come because somebody showed her their passion.  She affectionately tells about how her father instilled her passion of fishing though his own passion.

Of course, she then moves to her passion about reading and writing and this had me thinking.

Do I show my passion each and every day?  Do I share my passion to each and every student?  How can I do a better job of sharing my passion with my colleagues?

Who shares their passion with me?  

When I think about how my teaching has changed because of what other teachers have shared with me, I am overwhelmed and so, so grateful.  I am not talking about the teacher down the hall who shares a resource or an idea.  Although I am thankful for them, I celebrate teachers like Penny -- and so many others -- who share their passion with us through webinars, online courses, tweets, blog posts, books, and conferences so that we may become better teachers.  

To paraphrase Penny, everything I have wanted to do in my classroom and my career, is because somebody showed me and shared with me their passion.

This is the true celebration. 


  1. Teacher passion- a great thing to celebrate. We have benefitted from passionate teachers all through life. We aspire to be that teacher for others. From your sharing through writing, I feel certain your students know your passion for learning, reading and writing.

  2. Passion is certainly contagious and inspiring Leigh Anne! Great questions.

  3. I am still passionate, now retired, but following some, like you, to find what people are doing. Penny's books were such inspirations to me. When I coached, I read both Book Love and Write Beside them with the teachers of the older students. The books will not grow old, I think, with Penny continuing to share wise words. Thanks, Leigh Anne, a great celebration!

  4. Passion is the key to a good life no matter what you do. Penny is a model of that. Thank you for sharing her words and your questions. We need to constantly renew ourselves with people like Penny and reflection.

  5. That's one of the things that I love about our little online community -- we get lifted by each other's passion. We learn. We grow. We try new things. We reflect. We share. Thank you for sharing your passions with me over the years. :)

  6. Yes, let's celebrate passion. Why else would I do what I do... :) ? From teacher to teacher, from teacher to students. I always hope I instill a bit of passion in students.

  7. My teaching has changed SO much due to others' sharing their passion...this is spot on! Such a good question- do we share our passion every day. Or even do we KNOW what our passions are?! Thinking of some teachers I have worked with, I have to wonder what passions they have...I don't believe their students know & I'm not sure if they even know themselves. This is something to really think about & share- thank you!

  8. Oh, what a great slice. I can just picture you listening, taking notes, backing up, it's all the mark of an educator who wants to learn and who instills passion. Yes, you are passionate! I've watched your all school booktalks! I can't help but tip my hat to Tara Smith who's always been a mentor to me. I've loved learning from her through the years and getting to meet her in person at NCTE was a special pleasure.

  9. Leigh Anne, passion is what makes great teacher rouse young minds. Penny Kittle is one of my favs. When I go to conferences, I make sure to attend one of her workshops. Long Island plans to have her keynote our conference in a couple of years.

  10. Wow, Leigh Anne - such a strong post - passionate about celebrating teachers' passion! I love that you couldn't sleep until you put your thoughts and insights down! I'm going to look for the video and grab a notebook and tap into Penny Kittle's wisdom!

  11. I am a Penny Kittle groupie too!
    Your passion for teaching comes through your posts -
    I celebrate you!

  12. Thank you so much for this, Leigh Anne. I tap into this collective passion as well, inspired by wonderful teachers like you who make me want to keep thinking and learning and being a better teacher. Happy Monday.