Whoosh—And Then It Was June!

The other day I was checking my March calendar for an upcoming dentist appointment but couldn’t find it. Then it dawned on me–OMG, it was already June.  This year is flying by in warp speed.  I don’t mind since it’s the year we finish the program so it’s ready to share, but still.  I can’t image where the last 2 years have gone.  One day I was at a meeting, agreeing to write a program on the traits, and now I am sitting here in the New York offices of Scholastic, looking at this magnificent work.  The staff at Scholastic has devoted night and day to creating Traits Writing since we first began.  The hard work shows; it’s simply beautiful.

Schools are wrapping up for the year and the requests for staff development are rolling in.  I’m excited to be in Long Island next week working with K-8 teachers.  Then in a couple of weeks I’ll be in Charleston, then Beaufort, South Carolina.  I’ll be in several places in Georgia in August – hot.  But writing is HOT.  Everywhere I go, teachers are working so hard to help their students with writing — and it’s making a difference.  Students write better now than they did 10 years ago.  We’ve got a good handle on why, too.  Traits, writing process, and writing workshop all rolled into one make a powerful instructional model at every grade.

I read a book the other day.  A real book.  Not an educational book – imagine.  It’s been about three years since I was able to do that.  Anne Lamott’s novel, Imperfect Birds.  If you love good writing and character studies, you might want to add this to your summer reading list.  Anne simply takes my breath away.  And on the children’s book front, I highly recommend Brian Selznick’s Wonderstruck.  It’s two stories, weaving time and pictures together until they become one at the end of 629 pages.  It won’t be released until September, but it’s worth the wait.  Would love to hear about what you are reading.   – Ruth

About Ruth Culham

RUTH CULHAM has written more than 40 books and best-selling resources illuminating both writing and the reading-writing connection for countless educators around the globe. Her groundbreaking work with the writing traits and writing from reading is the culmination of 40 years of research, practice, and passion. Ruth’s most recent books, The Writing Thief: Using Mentor Texts to Teach the Craft of Writing and Dream Wakers: Mentor Texts That Celebrate Latino Culture, are available from Stenhouse Publishers. She also conducts professional development for schools and districts and writes a regular column for The Reading Teacher.
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