It’s been quite the hiatus.

I frantically finished grading the end of 1st semester’s work and headed to Florida for the break, where I spent most of my time at my sister’s quite ill.  I had such grand plans for the break, including tending to this blog, but my body revolted and forced me to rest. 

Today was our first day back to school, and I wanted to try and give my students purpose and direction for the new year.  In one of my clearer moments over the break, I read this tweet from @danpink: “What’s your sentence?: The video.”  This was what I wanted my students to do on the first day back.  Write a 3rd-person sentence, in the past tense, describing a big picture kind of New Year’s goal. 

Today we watched the video, brainstormed ideas, and I shared with them my sentence: She may not have finished first, but she never gave up. 

While the denotative meaning of my sentence refers to my conflicted desire to run a 5K this year, it also applies to my writing, my hobbies, my life.  I don’t take risks.  I don’t fail because I don’t try anything that I might fail at doing.  And if I see myself starting to fail (*cough* crochet *cough*), I quit. 

I shared all this with my students, because I thought that if I show them this tiny blemish in my character, it might inspire them to craft a more powerful sentence.  And my students did not disappoint.  I promised them I would not tweet or blog specific sentences, so I won’t, but many of my students wrote inspiring, motivating sentences. 

Tomorrow, we’ll hang them like wallpaper on the cinder block, and I hope that as they drift in and out of what I’m teaching them, that their eyes will fall on a sentence or two and they’ll think about how they are living their lives, and remember how much I want them to keep at least one eye toward their futures.

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