Writing Territories

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More later…incomplete brainstorming of idea

Today I was thinking about how I want a page of ideas because some days I just think about what’s nagging me or about how tired I am, and that gets old after awhile. Then, I remembered the days before the high stakes got higher and the days before CC architect David Coleman told us all that nobody really gives a shit about what you (students) think or feel.  Back in the days, where I spent time with students gathering seed ideas for writing. I thought how I would make a page of seed ideas for writing based on that mini-lesson of helping students find their writing territories. Then, I can add to the list from time to time and use the list as a launching pad at others.  I may also go through the list at some point and think of what on it really fits for a slice. Below I have included Atwell’s list followed by my response:

Atwell’s list from which to gather writing territories:

* memories: early, earlier, and recent

* favorites, now and then
* obsessions * pets, now and then
* idiosyncrasies * teachers, now and then
* problems * places: school, camp, trips, times away with             friends and relatives
* dreams * hobbies
* itches * sports
* understandings * games
* confusions * music
* passions * books
* sorrows * poems
* risks * songs
* accomplishments * movies
* fears * writers and artists
* worries * food
* fantasies * pet peeves
* family, close and distant * beloved things—objects and possessions—now             and then
* friends, now and then * all the loves of your life
* fads * anything else

 My Writing Territories list:

Memories

Grown up memories-my first classroom, getting married, birth of my kids, Bike South 2000, my children’s injuries, snuggle time, KMWP

Childhood memories-hiding in my closet as a child, playing in the woods, writing notes in class, correcting a ex-boyfriend’s love letter, the fight in 8th grade

Obsessions

coffee, random Googling to find answers to things that aren’t important, checking email

Idiosyncrasies

I’m not sure I have these. I eat ketchup on my grilled cheese. Maybe I should ask someone else…

Problems

What is this problems that bother me? GA and CC–to be or not to be? Testing culture, not knowing what will be on the tests, the mystery of the state of education,  feeling like I teach well and jump through hoops, working too hard, lack of balance, not knowing how to juggle all of life’s demands, consistency in balance

Dreams/fantasies

A new house, visiting family in Iceland, a convertible

Itches

Bipartisin nature of education reform, emphasizing standards over teaching, lack of real support with teaching, not enough support for literacy, too many worksheets for my kids, teachers without passion

Sorrows

Losing my dad, my mom’s loneliness, the thought of losing a loved one, Cancer

Risks

Back in the day I was a free and reckless spirit. Not so much now–perhaps it’s teaching and motherhood

Accomplishments

Don’t know that I’d want to blog my accomplishments…

Fears/Worries

Losing my husband or kids, the thought of losing my mom, not being good enough, never being able to conquer clutter in my mind/house/classroom

Family

being the youngest, seeing my youngest be the youngest, little sisters, big brothers, half brothers, family in Iceland, getting new family when marrying, sibling rivalry

Friends

Tracy and Mandy-friends then a fight, reuniting–Arizona trip, Bonnie and Lisa, team friends, high school friends, bike tour friends, work friends, 

Fads

Silly bands become rubber bands, Loom bands–from my child’s obsession to eBay, my boy and his Elite socks

Favorites

coffee, dark chocolate, Apple gadgets, The Closer, Colbert

Pets

Annabelle my Border Collie Aussie herder

Teachers

WP teachers, 

Places

hiking/camping in Iceland

Hobbies

writing, hiking, camping

Sports

training, yoga, cycling

Games

Head Bandz, Apples to Apples, Words with Friends

Music

U2, my daughter and music, my husband’s love songs

Books 

yes…

Poems

The Rider, the misinterpreted poem, Two Voice poems, fun poems with kids, playing with poems, parody, 

Songs

the lullaby at night for my 6 year old, my bad voice

Movies

Writers/Artists

Food

dark chocolate, Hibachi, Welcome to Moes, fireside picnic basket

Pet Peeves

sharpening a pencil while someone is talking, tapping a pencil like it’s a drumstick, people not doing their jobs, children talking back, 

Beloved Things

The Loves of My Life

Anything pales in comparison to my amazing husband–the one and only true love of my life

Anything Else

 

 

 

 

 

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One thought on “Writing Territories

  1. Oh, this is great! Just reading through the list, I got so many ideas!! It’s so hard being pushed to teach toward a test, having to set aside ways you love to work to meet what feels like arbitrary and (almost?) irrelevant criteria. Feh. Glad you paused to think about writing territories!
    ~Stacie

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