This year I'm still patiently waiting for one of my favorite moments to occur. It's that moment when one of my writers brings a story to school that they wrote at home. It's such a lovely teachable moment for many reasons. I don't have time to completely expand on all the rewards, but there's one thing I relish saying. "Is it okay if we keep this book at school for a while and put it in Miss McMorrow's Favorites basket? (It holds my favorite current read-alouds.) I'm sure the kids will take great care of it and will love reading it over and over again."
Even though this moment has yet to occur this year, I'm wondering how well I send a significant message about first grade authors and creators of books. Am I as purposeful and intentional as I could be? Do my writers know that their words are as priceless and as important as the those of their favorite authors?
Although I'm confident I have much room to grow in this area, I do believe my kids are receiving a fairly clear message. I have a large tub in my room that's already full of classroom books we've created. Those books are as popular as Mo Willems' books, and my kids love Mo's books. My readers are very kindhearted and sweet, but even they at times have difficulties negotiating the sharing of particular classroom books. They're cherished.
But what about the writing they do during writing workshop? How does their personal daily writing compare with those of the grown-ups? This is where I see more of a deficit in my practice, but I'm reminded that one of our writing unit celebrations involves leaving our published writing in the school library for a few weeks to be shared with the entire school.
The question is how can I increase the rubbing of shoulders between my students' writing and those of the pros? I'm certain I can always do a better job of showing my writers that they don't have to wait for some grown-up magical age to become writers whose work is worthy of noticing.