Reading and Writing Every Day

Screen Shot 2016-03-01 at 12.06.41 PMIt is such a simple rule.  To become a better writer and reader, one must read and write each day.  It is easier said than done.  This past fall was difficult for me.  In order to make more room in my life for reading and writing, I had to decide not to spend every waking hour thinking about my teaching.  After 21 years of patterns for daily planning, and creating, (really obsessing) about teaching, I set a goal for two hours of daily writing and / or reading.  I’m not sure how many hours Malcolm Gladwell said it takes to develop a new habit, but I feel like I did it.

I’m sure many people have done this kind of life work with exercise or eating habits.  I hope my success in the area of daily reading and writing will spill over into these other areas, eventually.  But, for now, I’m congratulating myself for accomplishing as much as I have so far.  I have taken back control of my life in the evening.  It helps when your children become teenagers and can drive.  I have allowed for daily reading or writing.  At first it felt like I was sneaking a vacation while I was still working.  This was a good sign.  However, when I share this accomplishment, a lot of people look at me funny, as if to suggest “It must be nice.”  I’m not feeling guilty about it anymore.

This month I will celebrate my daily practice with lots of other teachers and writers during the Month of March Slice of Life Daily Writing Challenge.  I’m looking forward to meeting new people and finding old friends to inspire me as a writer and teacher of writing and reading.  Starting in 2006 I blogged at http://www.learningontheedge.blogspot.com .  I changed my blogging platform to WordPress, but maintain the spirit of my first blog: I am a lifelong learner.  I’m excited to blog all month long!

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7 comments

  1. What a great idea. I co-teach a class for second chance readers at the high school level and it bothers me that my co-teacher doesn’t see the need to read and admits to the kids that she doesn’t read that much. I feel that if we want the kids to get better than we need to model it.

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  2. Isn’t something that taking time to read (or write) can feel like such a luxury?!? We have recommitted to TIME for reading and writing at school. We are in the second year of implementing Writing Workshop and will implement Reading Workshop with the new UoS next year. It is an exciting time. The students are looking at the teachers saying, “You mean we get to just sit here and read?” They know not of the wonders they are participating in by “just” sitting and reading. Thanks for your post today! Here is my first post http://sometimesfabuloussometimesfail.blogspot.com/2016/03/these-moments-sol16.html

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  3. Welcome to slicing! What you have allowed its an important lifeline in my humble opinion! Reading recharges me more than anything but this writing thing is angling for importance too. lol
    Happy slicing!

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  4. I really enjoyed reading about how you are taking back your reading & writing life. Sometimes I find it challenging to balance my personal life with my teaching life. Teaching is a passion for me, not just a job. So, some days I have to force myself to turn off my passion and claim some serenity back. Reading a good book or writing a blog post is a perfect opportunity to do that. Thanks for sharing! Good luck in SOL16!

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  5. Oh, I believe our culture makes us guilty when we do something just for us, as in “At first it felt like I was sneaking a vacation while I was still working.” I wonder where this comes from. I’m newly retired, and still often feel as If I need to be doing “something”, and spending an evening reading is not enough. Good for you for making that change for you. I’ll watch for your posts!

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