Inspiration sources: Slice of Life #11

Inspiration sources: Slice of Life #11

It is now Spring Break for my district. Two weeks. Which means two weeks without daily sources of material for me. My work day is where my writing begins to whisper. Somehow, by day’s end, something is rising to the surface as a possibility.

Now, I am worried. What happens when I shift into the introspective, reflective time away from students? My writing may have more meaning or it may be completely disconnected from reality. Time will tell. All I know is for two weeks, I have kind of lost my place.

In these first ten days of Slice of Life posting, I have had daily inspiration sources.

I spend all day kid watching. I listen in. I hear things that stick. They turn over and over in my mind. Writing lets me define them. It enables me to make sense. It reveals things I am trying to learn.

I have lots of stories of this past week I haven’t told. But they will become farther and farther away.

I place some of them here to hold them.

The words from one little guy two days before our break began: “I will be missing you soon.”

The girl who read her story aloud to all of us at the carpet. As I listened to her words, I watched the dramatic reactions of her peers and realized, we have a writer here.

The quiet in the art room as students worked to find their dreams in their work.

The expression on the face of one child who sensed the theme of a story as I read it aloud. I saw everything in her face: disgust, horror and anger. Her indignation was just like mine the first time I read this book and it was pretty powerful recognizing myself in her.

A quiet Friday afternoon making Spring Break reading plans with my students, one reader at a time.

Gratitude Circle 20 minutes later where reading was mentioned time and time again. “I am grateful I finished my book club book. I really loved it.” “I am grateful for the books I am taking home to read.” “I am grateful we can borrow books to read while we are away from our classroom.”

I sent my students off wishing them happy breaks full of words and stories.

Yet I know in one way they will stay with me as I continue to write about the world we share.

Inspiration sources. These aren’t direct lines to follow. Happening and recounting. It is not just this. It is layering. Weaving. Circling. Wondering.

The examination of one thing as it becomes quite another. Word by word, new truths are made.

Bad Irony: Slice of Life

I am participating in the Slice of Life challenge to write and publish a post every day in March.

Slice of Life is hosted by Two Writing Teachers. I thank them for the community they provide. Read more slices here.


32 thoughts on “Inspiration sources: Slice of Life #11

  1. I definetely know the feeling! At the beginning of summer, I often find myself lost because I don’t have a set routine any more. I have no sense of what day it is – but it can be nice if you let yourself settle into the relaxation 🙂 You should sit outside (if the weather is nice) and just write about what you see and hear around you!

  2. While you may not have classroom or student inspirations, the fact that you have cultivated searching for and seeking out stories in your daily life will help you these two weeks off. It’ll be exciting to see what comes out of it. Oh, and when you get stuck, follow a format, such as Currently…, Hello There, Today I…, etc. to get you started. I fall back on those when I’m stuck!

    Btw…I’m wondering what the read aloud was!

  3. “My writing may have more meaning or it may be completely disconnected from reality” – I have no doubt your slices will be meaningful and rich and strongly connected to life and heart. You have this amazing ability to notice and focus on what matters and then masterfully weave words and ideas into posts that fill readers with thoughts and emotions. Enjoy your break!

  4. Two weeks!? Our week off starts next week and I kind of wonder where my inspiration will come from as well (although I am traveling for half the time). Seriously, though, knowing you, you will find plenty of inspiration!

  5. I’m sure you’ll find inspiration, Carrie, because you pay attention to your world no matter where you are. I may also start reading your posts backwards, as there is so much wisdom that you wend your way to at the end! “Happening and recounting. It is not just this. It is layering. Weaving. Circling. Wondering.” Love this!!!

  6. My process is exactly the same. I try to plan ideas – list them on a post-it. It is not until I sit down in front of the computer that I figure out what it is I want to say. I think you will have no problem finding your territories –you might even surprise yourself with where you find them.

  7. I’ll be interested to see how this time impacts your writing. I am confident that you will share your insights with us. I hope that these next 2 weeks fill you with whatever you need to be inspired, invigorated, invested in what is most important to you. Thanks for your amazing posts!

  8. I’m excited to see what inspires you out of the classroom! You’ve already trained your mind to notice the little details throughout your work day, and I’m sure it will transfer to the time you have off. Take time to recharge and enjoy!

  9. Two weeks, wow! It might be fun to stir up the memories and capture them one by one. Enjoy “your” time too, Carrie.

  10. Two weeks! I think we all need time for introspection and reflection before that last long push towards the end of the school year. Enjoy it, Carrie, knowing that your writing life will reflect this quiet time, too.

  11. I’m sorry? Two weeks? What???
    *Hearkens back to last year’s spring pause of a four-day-weekend..*

    Moving on…

    I love the positive focus of the Gratitude Circle. I may have to adapt that idea to my tween son who is tending to focus a bit too much on the negative about his days lately. (Love adolescence!!!)

  12. Carrie,
    That is a beautiful post. I love the imagery. I am confident you will think more deeply and come up with wonderful posts over the next two weeks. And you obviously will miss those dear reading partners you get to spend your days with.


  13. Life will deliver the inspiration you need and you have the talent to share it in the best way possible. Our schools are starting spring break, but they are only out for a week. Enjoy this break!

  14. Oh, Carrie, some how, some way, inspiration will fill the pages of this blog day after day. The stories you share … I’m mesmerized every time I stop by and visit with you here. You are such an amazing story teller. Crafting words. Carefully selecting phrases. One word at a time. You also had me at Gratitude Circle! I LOVE it!!!

  15. Wow! 2 weeks of break? What a gift…and a challenge! I love that you made reading plans with each of your students. I love the idea of a gratitude circle with them. I love your heartfelt observations of your students. I hope you enjoy your break and find daily inspiration in your life away from the classroom.

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