Thursday, November 25, 2010

Giving Thanks for Some of the People Who Have Changed and Are Changing My Life


photo from Flickr Creative Commons by tomswift46

I wouldn't be who I am today as a writer if Philippa Stratton and Bill Varner at Stenhouse hadn't believed in my ability to turn the sketchiest of proposals into a book.

I am grateful to Brenda Power for valuing my article-length thinking and writing for Choice Literacy. Thanks to her recent generosity, I now have ideas brewing for several articles about using new technologies in my classroom.


photo from Flickr Creative Commons by karola riegler photography

Who pushes my thinking? With out a doubt, Franki does, both on the blog and off: about reading and writing and education and baking and the value of Disney in the world (just to mention a few recent topics). Time spent with Meredith always results in new thinking and learning around technology and the arts. And then there are my smart colleagues in Dublin and Central Ohio, my blogging friends from far and near, and Tweet Peeps whose 140 character thinking prods, provokes and amuses.


photo from Flickr Creative Commons by BONGURI

For giving me a leg up and an invitation into the inner workings of NCTE via the suggestion that I apply to be on the NCTE Notable Children's Books in the Language Arts Committee, I am forever thankful to Monica. My life as a professional outside the walls of my building and the boundaries of my district has been forever broadened because of this opportunity. Presenting is pretty awesome, but having the opportunity to lead is even more amazing. Thanks for believing in me, Monica.

My life as a professional within the walls of my building has forever been changed by the opportunity to work with the amazing principal, Jeff Reinhard. He leads by example with an attitude of gratitude and an unwavering belief in the teachers and children at our building. He was a gift to us from the universe at the time we most needed him, and we are thankful for every day we work together to find the path to the success we all know we can achieve.


  1. I wish to write my own book soon, too. :D

  2. I am thankful to you, Mary Lee, for your generous spirit here in the blogging world. Your tireless enthusiasm, open kindness, and boundless curiosity are inspiring indeed! Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours... A.

  3. Beautiful reflection Mary Lee! We are all thankful for you, your ideas, and your love for teaching!

  4. Mary Lee,

    I'm incredibly touched and honored by your mention of me. I am incredibly grateful of your work too. In particular my admiration knows no bounds for your staying in the classroom and fighting on behalf of good teaching and good learning. Being in a private school it is much easier for me and so I admire and respect all of you who manage to continue to teach creatively, with books, and so intimately in this time of high-stakes tests and standards. Thank you so much for all you do.

  5. **wipes tears from eyes**

    Thanks, Monica. Thanks from me, and thanks on behalf of all public school teachers.

    The way I see it, it's like Robert Frost wrote in "The Tuft of Flowers":

    `Men work together,' I told him from the heart,
    `Whether they work together or apart.'

    I think we're actually all in this together, both public and private. Sometimes the energy to go on in MY corner of the teaching world comes from reading the dispatches from YOUR corner of the teaching world. Knowing what's possible where there is more freedom helps me work all the harder to give my students the kind of education that parents of any income level would want for their children.

    What can we do about the idiots who "malign and demonize and disrespect" the teaching profession? My best defense is to continue teaching their children, with passion and creativity, to THINK FOR THEMSELVES!

  6. What a wonderful post. So many things to be thankful for.


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