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Join the Two Writing Teachers blog for March Slice of Life Challenge.

Join the Two Writing Teachers blog for March Slice of Life Challenge.

 

A mallard nest on the island.

A mallard nest on the island.

My mother told me the story of discovering the goose nest.  She had gone out to the island, a small piece of land they had separated from their property years ago to solve the erosion/marsh issue.  She sat down in a lawn chair and was surprised to see a female Canada goose sitting in the brush.  Ah, she must be nesting.

My parents avoided the island but watched daily as the male guarded the space where the female sat on the nest.

Then I came for a visit.  On Saturday morning, I was looking toward the island and noticed both the male and female were walking around… and there were little fuzzy thinks walking around them.  Goslings!  They hatched!

We grabbed the binoculars and squealed with excitement.

I snuck out with my camera and telephoto lens to capture the scene.  The parents led their babies out for their first swim, and I caught it on video.

On Sunday other Canada geese families came by to visit and welcome the new goslings.

Why are we so fascinated by new life?

For weeks now I have been following Cynthia Lord’s daily Facebook posts about her bunny babies.  My daughter’s best friend had a baby last week, and we can’t get enough pictures.  Everywhere there is new life, and it is thrilling.

Mom and I chatted constantly about the baby goslings.  We grieved when we saw there were only four when originally there were five.  Even though this life and death is a part of every day in nature, we still marvel at it all.

Creation is an amazing thing.  We want to feel that newness of birth.  We delight in seeing something so small mimic its parents.  Don’t you look forward to all the firsts?

I was sitting out on the back porch reading.  I hadn’t seen the geese or goslings for some time.  I heard a splash and looked up to see one of the goslings jumping from the bridge into the water.  I called to Mom, “Guess what I just saw!?”

New life tells us that there is a generosity in this world.

There will be another hatching soon.  On the day I was leaving, Mom and I walked out to the island to see the abandoned nest.  I wanted to take a picture of it.  As we were talking, a flutter of wings flew up from the brush and flew into the lake.  A mother mallard.  There we saw her nest of 10 shiny white eggs.

I probably won’t be at the lake when these ducklings hatch, but I can be sure that Mom will call me with a report. New life is God’s way of saying life must go on.  It’s also just. plain. joy.

 

 

Please use this button on your site for DigiLit Sunday posts

Please use this button on your site for DigiLit Sunday posts

The school year has ended for me. The end isn’t a celebration for me. I try to feel excited about summer, but my heart is hurting. I miss my kids. I wonder what they are doing. I miss our daily connection. I hear their voices in my head. Eventually this fades, and I fit into my days like they were meant for me.

This weekend in order to tender the depression I know is coming, I traveled home to my parents’ house on the lake. This is a beautiful place to reflect, read, and relax.

Canada geese

While at the lake, these Canada geese hatched five goslings.

Teachers need this time as much as our students do. Time to not worry about the next lesson or the necessary evaluations. Time to look out at nature and just be present.

This is my intention: Presence.

My other intention is professional reading. I have started Katherine Bomer’s book The Journey is Everything. What I love about this book is Katherine writes as if she is speaking directly to me. Her tone is easy and conversational as she marvels in the wonder of the essay. I think her book will transform me personally as a writer as much as it does me as a teacher. The very things I love about writing this blog, writing to know what I’m thinking, is central to her theory about essaying. I grabbed the following quote to keep.

Students need essays

In order to read with more intention, I will be joining a book study group. Let me know in the comments if you want to join us. I am planning a Twitter chat with Katherine Bomer for later in the summer, so stay tuned.

If you have written a DigiLit blog post this week, please click the link below.

Discover. Play. Build.

Ruth Ayres invites us the celebrate each week. Click over to her site Discover. Play. Build. to read more celebrations.

This was our last week of school. On Tuesday, Vannisa spent the whole day with me finishing the Unsung Hero project. She finished the script, annotated bibliography, documentary video, and process paper. Whew! This was a group project for our 6th grade gifted students all year long, but our last group meeting was in April. The finishing touches were tedious, yet had to be done to submit the project to the Lowell Milken Unsung Hero Discovery Award.

I celebrate Vannisa’s persistence and commitment to this project. I hope at some future time to be able to share the video and story.

On Thursday after report card hand-out, I traveled to New Orleans to see two of my daughters. We had a lovely dinner together. I celebrate being the mom of happy, successful adults.

On Friday, I drove home to be with my parents. Dad’s art was in a show of winners of previous juried shows at The Cedars in Jackson. This drawing was my favorite. When Dad spoke of it, he said he figured out that it was OK to leave white space. We talked about how the white space is integral to the composition.

Heron, pen and ink pointillism by John Gibson.

Heron, pen and ink pointillism by John Gibson.

My parents, Dot and John Gibson with Dad's art.

My parents, Dot and John Gibson with Dad’s art.

Now I am sitting on the back porch at the lake enjoying a cup of coffee with Dad and listening to the calls of the birds. I celebrate time to slow down, time to be here, time…

Lake sunset

Lake sunset

Poetry Friday round-up is here today!

Poetry Friday round-up is here today!

photo by Margaret Gibson Simon enhanced on Picmonkey

photo by Margaret Gibson Simon enhanced on Picmonkey

Revisiting Presence, my 2016 One Little Word, makes me think of poetry. Poetry is about presence. We capture a moment, a thought, an image in a single verse and sit with it in the presence of the poem.

This month’s Ditty challenge on Michelle’s blog, Today’s Little Ditty, is a persona poem, suggested by Laura Shovan.

A persona poem makes the poet (then the reader) see the world through the eyes of another person. Today, I am a featured poet on Penny Parker Klostermann’s blog. She has a series “A Great Nephew and a Great Aunt” in which she shares a poem after her nephew’s art. She also invites other poets to participate. I volunteered to write a poem from my nephew’s drum riff.

My nephew Jack, 11 years old, has been playing drums all his life. He owns his own drum set and is taking private lessons. He selected percussion as his instrument for band next year in middle school.

Jack and I, along with my sister Beth, had a Google hangout. I asked Jack to create his own drum riff, and I would write a poem to go with it. When Beth sent me the video, I was inspired to write a poem in Jack’s persona. I am sharing the poem here, but please click over to Penny’s blog to see the video of Jack on the drums.

The beat
starts in my toes,
startles my legs,
up-down
up-down!
My fingers feel the groove
until the tingling,
spine-riveting jolt,
budda-bump-bum
budda-bump-bump-bum,
is more than I can stand.
I must
I must
beat the drum!
by Margaret Simon, all rights reserved

Jack's first drum set

Jack’s first drum set

I am hosting the Poetry Friday round-up today. Please leave your link by clicking the button below.

 

 

Winding Down

Join the Two Writing Teachers blog for March Slice of Life Challenge.

Join the Two Writing Teachers blog for March Slice of Life Challenge.

When I read the words winding down, I think of the energizer bunny. We just keep going and going all year long and now the battery is running low.

I had to power down my phone to use less battery power. I think I’ve done that to myself. I’m running on low battery power.

Good thing there are only a few days of school left. We are in the midst of final reports, awards, field day, and packing up the classroom for summer cleaning.

There’s the part of me that will miss the routine. Routines become comfort zones. I know what’s expected of me. Duty day, class schedule, lunch break, carpool line, all dependable time zones.

There’s this other part of me that craves the no-schedule of what my husband calls “the big weekend.”

I usually create a schedule: exercise, reading, writing, cleaning, etc. I always think I’ll have time to do the such-and-such that I didn’t do during the school year. I will read professional books. I will make an art journal. I’ll write a book of poetry.

This week I’ll say goodbye. I’ll pack my bag for the last time. Then I’ll plug in to the charger and re-juice my battery with summer.

Please use this button on your site for DigiLit Sunday posts

Please use this button on your site for DigiLit Sunday posts

I have three days left of school. That statement gets stuck in my throat. I’m not ready. In my position as a gifted teacher, I have the privilege of teaching my students year after year. But the sixth graders move on to middle school. This will be a week of goodbyes.

My students wrote their final blog posts for the year. Our space on Kidblog has become a meaningful, safe place for writing. I asked a 5th grader last week to do a graph of our blog posts this year. The most blog posts went to 6th grader, Kielan, with 139! We’ve written a total of 1121 posts this year!

Here is a sample of a few goodbye posts. I am proud to read that they feel like writers.

Sorry everyone, but this is the last week of GT. Soak it in while you can. Good-bye blankets, read aloud, parties, and GT and Mrs. Simon in general.

We have all learned so much from past writings to now. We have learned grammar (by force, AKA Grammarly), we have learned phrases and metaphors and similes, we have learned everything a poet and writer must know in life. Tobie

Today is the last day of Gt and I will miss Mrs. Simon and GT. I have learned many new forms of poems, like Abecedarian and Diamante. What I will hate about summer is summer reading. I will miss all the art projects and the forts and the pillows and read aloud, but I will not miss the Sol’s. Andrew

This site has let me talk to Mrs.Simon about problems that I had when I couldn’t talk to her face to face. This site has given me ideas from my classmates and connections. This site has let me share my life story with the world. This site has made me who I am today. This site has let me give ideas to my classmates and connections. This site has made my day or made me want to scream. But this site has so many memories that I hold so close to my heart. Erin

It is time to hit the refresh button, time for winding down, relaxing, reading, and reflecting. I have books ready for my summer reading. Here are a few of the books I’ve got waiting for me.

books 3books 2books 1

How will you hit the refresh button? Please join our conversation by leaving your blog link below.

Discover. Play. Build.

Ruth Ayres invites us the celebrate each week. Click over to her site Discover. Play. Build. to read more celebrations.

This weekly habit of celebrating is so good for me. By Saturday, I’m tired and inclined to think the worst about my week. And yet, to prepare a celebration post, I look back at my photos. There I see so much to celebrate. Take a photo journey through my week.

Mother's Day with daughters #1 and #3.

Mother’s Day with daughters #1 and #3.

Gardenia, my favorite scent, a gift from my daughter from her boyfriend's yard.  I wish it were scratch and sniff.

Gardenia, my favorite scent, a gift from my daughter from her boyfriend’s yard. I wish it were scratch and sniff.

A field trip to the beautiful and magical Avery Island.  Click the image to read more.

A field trip to the beautiful and magical Avery Island. Click the image to read more.

This note means more to me than the Starbucks card attached.  (I do love vanilla lattes.)

This note means more to me than the Starbucks card attached. (I do love vanilla lattes.)

Students play strategic games at Gifted by Nature Day.

Students play strategic games at Gifted by Nature Day.

I celebrate a week of love, flowers, kindness, beauty, and games. As my school year comes to a close, I need to focus more on these things.

A praise report!! My friend Amy got a scan this week that shows her cancer is “resolved.” No new spots. No light-ups! All clear! Wow, in just 5 months. Thank God!

quotesgram.com

quotesgram.com

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