Thursday, August 25, 2016

Poetry Friday

If I could gather the world's adults....especially educators, I assign The Element:How Finding Your Passion Changes Everything by Sir Ken Robinson.

I am a Teacher Librarian of a certain age that just drove her eldest to their first year of University. After shedding a few tears, I listened to the final chapters of The Element on my drive home. I'm so glad my child chose the University they did. I know my darling will find their element there.

Near the end of his book, Sir Ken reads a  poem titled The Hundred Languages. Because it's a translation of Loris Malaguzzi's work, I am sure that it is more soulful in it's original language of Italian.

I want to foster all the languages of all my students....the ones I drive to university and the others I only know for a school year.

The Hundred Languages

No way. The hundred is there.
The child
is made of one hundred.
The child has
a hundred languages
a hundred hands
a hundred thoughts
a hundred ways of thinking
of playing, of speaking.

A hundred always a hundred
ways of listening
of marveling, of loving
a hundred joys
for singing and understanding
a hundred worlds
to discover
a hundred worlds
to invent
a hundred worlds
to dream.
(read the rest here)

Please visit Heidi at My Juicy Little Universe for more Poetry Friday

Friday, August 19, 2016

Poetry Friday

When a Recipe becomes Poetry of Sorts

Have a ball with more Poetry Friday @

(c) Linda Mitchell

Monday, August 15, 2016

What Does a Middle School Teacher Librarian Read for fun in the Summer?

My Summer Reading List 2016

Burn, Baby Burn! By Meg Medina *

Full Cicada Moon by Marilyn Hilton

George by Alex Gino

Chains by Laurie Halse Anderson *

The Seventh Wish by Kate Messner

Pax by Sarah Pennypacker

Untangled: Guiding Teenage Girls Through the Seven Transitions to Adulthood by Lisa Damour *

Boxers by Gene Luen Yang

Blue by Joyce Meyer Hostetter

The Dog Who Could Fly by Damien Lewis *

The Shadow Hero by Gene Luen Yang

How it Went Down by Kekla Magoon *

Relish by Lucy Knisley

Hour of the Bees by Lindsay Eager *

Coal Town Jesus by Ron Koertge

Music Heard So Deeply: A Music Therapy Memoir by Betsey King (just started)

The Element by Sir Ken Robinson * (almost finished)

Blue Birds by Caroline Starr Rose * (in deep…but not finished)

Black Dove, White Raven by Elizabeth Wein * (just started)

·         * Audio book

Thursday, August 11, 2016

Poetry Friday

Today is my birthday.

I only celebrate years when my age ends in
a five or a zero...which it doesn't so
no biggie.

On Monday I begin a sixth
year as a Teacher Librarian!

However, today
some birthday moments
have been crowded with to do lists....
authors coming to visit
presentations to present
orientation, books to get ready
lesson plans to prep
and Poetry Friday.... I don't have an idea to share!

My daughter overheard me
babbling to myself while
doing laundry,

"Mom, don't let yourself get
overwhelmed" !
Julieanne's Fabulous Blog

A loving cue to
go simple
go home.

My offering for Poetry Friday
is a photo I took of Black-eyed-Susans
just outside the door my church.
Greeters of souls
arriving to worship
our Creator.

This ramble of wildflowers
frames words of Liz Gilbert
so well....the words describe
the me I was born to be.

And, they lend perfectly to
Carol Varsalona's Summerscape Challenge

I hope I can hold on
to the wisdom of the words
and wildflowers
for another year.
Next birthday is a
"zero" year.

Friday, July 29, 2016

Poetry & Our Library of Congress

Playing with maps @ Library of Congress 

This past week I had the privilege of attending a Library of Congress Summer Teaching Institute.

This free Summer Teacher Institute is offered annually. Applications are open to all teachers. I attended session #5 with an educator from Canada, teachers and  librarians from public schools, private schools and a large public library system. 

To say that I spent a week fangirling would be a hyperbole of understatement. I have colleague Kristy Beall to thank for putting the bug in my ear to consider applying for this summer's institute.

Twenty-seven participants in session five were led by the current LOC Teacher in Residence Tom Broder and the Education Outreach Department. They put themselves, their expertise as well as all the resources of the Library of Congress at their disposal.

I was struck by many ideas this past week….but the first day I came across Found Poetry from Primary Sources. SO COOL! 

Letter written by Susan B. Anthony & me 7/26/16
Even though the project I am working on is not poetry (I'll share more about that later), I kept coming back and back to these web pages….getting more and more ideas for my own writing.

I did my best to keep up with Teachers Write during this busy week. It was tough but not impossible.
Tuesday's quick-write prompt from kidlit author Madelyn Rosenberg was to capture a setting in ten words or short phrases. 
Main Reading Room -- bucket-list-wish fulfilled!

My Day at the Library of Congress
an Imperfect Reverso

Fragment of history
Lost map
Covered knowledge
Reverent learning
Learning reverently
Knowledge revealed
Maps charted
Past of stories
Each piece

(c) all rights reserved Linda Mitchell

 Many thanks to Margaret Simon, Educator and Poet extraordinaire for hosting this week's Friday Poetry Round-Up at Reflections on the Teche. You won't be sorry for stopping by and fueling your soul with some poetry. 

Meso-American Chocolate Vessel 650 BCE

Friday, July 22, 2016

Poetry Friday
July 22,2016

Many thanks to BOOKS4LEARNING for hosting today's Poetry Round-Up.

It's July but I'm thinking about October....October 6th to be more precise. Because, October 6th is National Poetry Day in ENGLAND.

Liz Brownlee, a National Poetry Day Ambassador, is asking for message poems.
These poems will be shared on her website and entered into a contest. She shared this information just this morning on her blog.

If you are British, I hope you look into participating with an entry. If you are not British, such as myself, let's support a day of poetry by taking up the challenge and sharing in our own ways.

There are lesson plans and all sorts of download, activities, and goodies at the Arts Council England

For more details look here:

I do enjoy a poetry challenge -- I think I will join in on this one in thinking and writing at least if not entering from across the pond.

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Poetry Friday
July 15, 2016

I have a writing project set in the 1930s. One of the characters is a teenager named Irene.
When Jo Knowles challenged Teachers Write Campers Monday, July 11th :

Take a moment to reflect on what's been happening in the world and what we can do, however small, to put more love in it. To connect. Today's prompt: Write a poem or other reflection starting with the phrase, "I am only one person, but I can...."

This is my response...from teen Irene and a fictional teen of today named Amani. I call this a side-by-side poem. I don't know if there is an official title for the form or not. Doesn't matter. I like the two voices side-by-side.

Thank you to Franki & Mary Lee over on A Year of Reading for hosting today's Poetry Friday.

(c) Linda Mitchell