Teachers Write

24 hrs- did and noticed

Woke up at 2:00 a.m. with a whining dog on my bed- put him on the floor.

Fell back asleep and woke up again at 6:00.

Got some coffee,  drank some water and lemon, and made myself a green smoothie.

Went for a walk with my daughter’s dog to go pick some raspberries.   I carried for esa short time where there was a lot of traffic and the hill was steep.  We ended up walking 2 miles without protest.  I picked 1/2 quart of wild sweet raspberries.  We were both covered in hitchhiker spiny seeds.  Afterward, I did my exercise, took a shower and got ready to meet my sister.

I met my sister at a local movie theater.  The movie. unfortunately was not very good.  In fact, it was kind of bizarre. After the movie, we hung out near our cars chatting for the next hour and a half.  My sister confessed that she is not an extrovert.  We talked about kids, her retirement and planning a weekend together.  Lots of laughs.  We said our goodbyes.

I got home, I took Rufus (the dog) out.  I grabbed the book Children Want to Write,  to read outside on the side yard.  While I was out there I could hear the cry of the neighborhood hawk.   I noticed a hummingbird moth fluttering in the hostas.  I took pictures of it.

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Write About

Gae Polisner, Nora Raleigh Baskin

“First Lines” exercise when I am teaching kids (or adults) and I know my students don’t feel like writing very much that day. It’s a low-risk writing exercise. 

            One line. What do you have to lose?

             All you have to do is write the first line of a story that you never have to finish.

            In fact, you aren’t suppose to finish. It’s just one teeny, weeny sentence.

            How hard could that be?    You can use this “first line” exercise as a jumping off/writing prompt. These are some “rules” that I have discovered and gathered, in my sixteen years of publishing, that work for ME. There are really only three types of sentences, so hence only three ways you can start your story. 

*Description : It was a cold and stormy night

*Dialogue : “I like you,” the boy said.  This includes sounds:  Bang! Pop! Watch out! And the ever-popular: Crash!

   *Narration: The boy and girl walked down the street.

The world changed when Samantha  Jean arrived.

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Teachers Write

I am feeling annoyed today.  I do not think I did well on my final exam.  I feel like I am adrift not feeling anchored.  My thoughts are about John in Vietnam. He has been in Vietnam for five years.  My days are shadowed by the fear I have that I may never see him again.  His lettters always raise my spirits.  John has a sense of humor that he shares in his letters.  He makes me laugh out loud when I read his letters.  I’m on my way to work.  I work in a cosmetic factory which is mundane, but I have lots of friends that work there and we talk a lot. I arrive at the factory and get out of my car.  I start walking to the front door when someone calls my name.  I turn around to see who is calling me. Tears escape from my eyes and I am suddenly dizzy and overwhelmed.  John’s strong embrace wraps me up, centering me.  I feel grounded again knowing he is alive and safe.

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Teachers Write

Here I am in Connecticut.  Autumn is beautiful here compared to California. I have enrolled in college along with my sister.  Today is my birthday, but I am not happy.  My boyfriend from California is fighting in Vietnam.  I pray that he will survive this terrible war.  There is so much news about the war.  People are protesting out on the streets and it is televised on t.v.  I can’t help knowing how hard it must be for him to fight for our country knowing that people in our country are angry about it.

I am outside, the air is cool, and it is very peaceful.  I look up at the half moon and imagine that John is looking up at the moon as well.  There is an eleven -hour difference, so that is not happening, but I want to imagine that maybe in eleven hours he will be looking at the moon and thinking of me. Tears stream down my face as I wipe them away.  I make a wish on the moon for his safety and I go in and write him a letter.

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Teachers Write

We have a side yard that my husband and I are working on.  When building a stone wall and a staircase to our front door my husband dumped a bunch of gravel and rocks on that side yard.  As a result, grass is not plentiful on the side yard.  My husband spread weed killer on the yard.  Lots of the weeds/grass died, but not all.  I have been using a hoe to hack/dig up the weeds and the grass. I am covered in dirt and it takes a lot to get the dirt out from underneath my fingernails.  I take clumps of grass, loosen the dirt and throw them in an orange Home Depot bucket to be deposited in the woods.   It is a bit monotonous, but it has to get done. It’s a good workout.   I need plenty of water while I am doing this work because I am sweating.  There are two hawks in the neighborhood that entertain me “musically” with their screeching. I am mesmerized by hawks.  A hawks screech is high pitched and sounds a bit like it is wailing.  I look up to see them circling our yard.   Often I will hear a group of crows making noise and I look up to see them chasing the hawks away.  Sometimes they will land in a tree in our yard and I stop what I am doing and just observe them.

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Teachers Write

I have many names.  My “proper” name is Margaret.  My nickname and my initials  are Meg- Margaret Elizabeth Geary.  When I went to middle school I told friends and teachers my name was Margaret.  That was short lived.  Family nicknames include Maggot (from my oldest brother), Mick and Micky and Meggy.

Ava is a name I would choose. Research says that the word may be from the Latin “avis,” meaning “bird.” It could also be a short form of the name Chava (“life” or “living one”).  To me it is a stately name.

It is a name that would give me confidence. More of a take charge personality with grace. I am short, but I feel the name Ava is for someone who presents as being tall, almost statuesque.

 

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Teachers Write

I had a hair appointment today. While I was getting my hair washed I noticed a woman come in and sit in a chair with a beautician. She did not look happy, she pointed to her bangs with a bit of a scowl. The beautician instantly got her scissors and began to trim her bangs. Her expression changed and she had a bit of a smile as her bangs were being cut. The beautician finished the bangs and put a product on her long hair that seemed to tame her curls, She left looking very pleased.

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