For me, it has been 14 times. After my first Summer Writing Institute in 2009, I came that next October. I was overwhelmed by the crowd. Yet, after 5 hours of inspiration and a filled notebook of great ideas to guide my teaching, I return by train to VA. When March came, I trekked north again on a Saturday. And now it is my tradition. Now, I mark the Saturdays in October and March on my new calendar and you will find me at TC learning.
Lucy told a story about how 100+ Calkins family members gathered for a reunion years ago. Being among this extended group of related people, her son commented that made him feel OK and less weird. That is EXACTLY how I feel about coming to the TCWRP Saturday Reunion. I come to be around those who "make me feel less weird". Back in VA, a few that I work with have a literacy focus and a desire to grow it as I do. I value the conversations I have with them that lift the level of our practice. A few have time to work on their literacy craft as I strive to also do. I value the collaborative times we share. Many have a different focus - math, young children to get home to, a wedding to plan, an aged-parent to look after. And I get that. This life we lead is big and our world offers so many focal points.
Yesterday, I left feeling exactly as Lucy's son. It feels so OK to spend the day with people who all make me feel less weird! I came to the Saturday Reunion to be with my people! I am part of this family of educators who will never stop searching for an answer to this question: What can we learn today to lift the level of our practice?! I left with a notebook filled with ideas and a calendar in my purse marked to return on October 22, 2016 & March 18, 2017.
90 times. Definitely a TCRWP tradition.
14 times/ Definitely now MY tradition.