15 November 2012

Ready for NCTE 2012

The final week of preparations before NCTE 2012 brought a flurry of activity in an already busy season of the election, upcoming holidays and near end to fall semester. Only about twelve hours ago the reality of the fact that I’m heading to Las Vegas today hit me. I do not take the opportunity to participate in the National Council for Teachers of English Annual Convention lightly. As thousands of literacy educators join forces over the next few days, even thousands more will continue the important work in schools.

One such school includes my son's elementary school in Lexington Kentucky. Before I left town I arranged for my son's class to Skype with 9 year old author, Eva Ridenhour, who lives in Bismarck, North Dakota. I'll write more about this exciting learning experience in a future post. At this very moment, he's having this experience while I sit at the airport writing this post from my phone and waiting for my flight. Without the educators who are still at school today, this experience would not be happening. The teacher learned how to use Skype this week. The librarian and principal supported the teacher's willingness to learn and to try something new for the kids. My dedicated colleague agreed to visit the school and capture photos for our adolescent literacy blog.

In addition to all the prep work for my presentation at NCTE and my husband's continued work on his dissertation, he and I worked tirelessly each evening to help our son draft his first research paper. We met with his teachers yesterday to confirm our happiness with his success in middle school so far. At that middle school in Lexington, my 11 year old son is today handing in his first ever research paper because a dedicated science teacher understands the importance of having kids write in science class too.

Let's just say the past ten days in our household have been extra busy. In addition to my duties as a mom, I was extra busy on the job, too. I coordinated and facilitated three days of Literacy Design Collaborative Training for science, social studies, and English teachers, most of whom are in their schools today carrying on with the important work of providing an education for students in Lexington. Amazing teachers and a colleague co-facilitated the training days. So, no. I cannot take the luxury of leaving for NCTE today for granted.

I am grateful.
I am excited!
I am ready to learn, share, and collaborate at NCTE 2012.