letter of recommendation to officially leave my professional role

Dear School community, I am writing to recommend Amélie Baker for a longer extension of her time as a writer. Amélie found great fulfillment as a teacher in BPS for ten years. During her time she taught a range of courses, some more successfully than others. She foresees a return to the classroom in the…

puzzles

My mother believes in the intellectual value of doing puzzles. For younger children it teaches patience, perseverance, shape recognition and logic. For older people it is calming, a form of meditation, and an outlet for our modern over thinking brains. Sufficient to say that my childhood was full of puzzles, many of which I absolutely…

if Icarus never flew

Icarus failed because he took his trusty wings too close to the sun. He died in a triumphant rebuke of what he had been taught. He crashed back down to earth so that we could all be reminded that no matter our own wants or skills, the sun will always burn too hot. But what…

white knuckling

I try to write things with meaning and weight, but tonight as I have to start planning the next steps of this adventure, I need to simply offer some records. I have been writing, i have been making progress. I have no measures to know if any of it is enough. I have heard of…

universe, I get it, message received loud and clear

I don’t always discuss the specifics of my life, but these are too good not to share. If you have been reading as of late, you know that I am taking a year away from being a classroom teacher to focus on my writing. It is also time for me to reflect on my career…

being accessible

I am away from the classroom, so I don’t have my captive audience, the people who had to listen to me, or at least pretend to. I tried hard to not be a teacher who was alienating or direct by tunnel vision, I designed activities and an environment to engage students with their own thinking,…

“I’m taking the year off…to…um…write”

I am embarking on a strange new way of living, one that is structured only by my own self-discipline, rewarded in a currency of my own making, and with a high possibility of some type of failure. After ten years of teaching in a formal high school classroom, I am leaving behind that structure to live amongst…

from the desk of Marlon James

The author posted this note on FaceBook and it instantaneously illuminated for me a sensation I hadn’t been able to completely define. Marlon James Yesterday at 7:50pm · So I’m on a panel last night and somebody asks, how does one write when overcome with emotion, mostly grief I’m assuming. How does one get words…

When I Think of Tamir Rice While Driving

in the backseat of my car are my own sons, still not yet Tamir’s age, already having heard me warn them against playing with toy pistols, though my rhetoric is always about what I don’t like, not what I fear, because sometimes I think of  Tamir Rice & shed tears, Source: When I Think of…

rest-abundant muse

The restless muse The term ought not be restless, rather it should be rest-abundant, my muse has been dormant for too long. Now it tugs and begs and cajoles and dares me to feed it. Where once I was content to do what had to be done, my inner imp continues to berate me with…

Escape is inevitable.

My universe has been tilting over the last year onto a new axis. Exterior markers that had defined my world shook and crumbled. Change in how I see myself is inevitable. Everywhere I turn signals point onto the next highway I am mapping. Five recent articles in major publications are all versions of pieces I have wrote,…

writing takes so much out of me. I am in a new land, with plenty to explore, but the words just follow me everywhere. Shame, queasy, face crinkled in confusion, seeking respite. I just want it to be over, I just want it to be done, and then what, stash it away or gasp share…