Offerings: Slice of Life Tuesday

Today, I bring you a bouquet of wonderfulness, plucked by my own hands from the bounty around me, gathered with care and bound with a length of twine I found in my kitchen drawer:

A video a student sent me, just because she knows I love animated shorts, and this one was beautiful and sweet and wonderful.

A student, who loves to play with language, becoming excited when I explain appositives, shouting, “I call those COMMA TWINS!” [see what I did there?] Which, for the record, is absolutely BRILLIANT.

That same student, who gets super excited to be noticed, basking in the spotlight because we then introduced “comma twins” as a literary term.

A group of fourth-graders who somehow stumble both onto the idea of “oxymorons” and “fatal flaws” within the space of a single hour lesson.

A fifth-grader who thinks it’s cool that I don’t care if people know how old I am, after I explain that today is my half birthday and that officially makes me forty-eight-and-a-half.

Turkey barley soup, served up for lunch out of a favorite mug.

Second-graders coming to realize that not every kid has everything they need to be healthy and happy.

A kid who notices an appositive in her book and thinks to email me a picture of it.

The musical videos a student sent me of him playing the ukulele with his sometimes-willing brother at his side. Oh, the beauty and the joy that he radiates.

There were so many other flowers by the side of the road it was tough to choose just a few.

A good problem to have.

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15 Responses to “Offerings: Slice of Life Tuesday”

  1. arjeha Says:

    These are such sweet flowers and make such a lovely bouquet. I bet you could enough bouquets to fill every room in your house.

    • Lainie Levin Says:

      Thank you! And…yes. I could surround myself with these, which makes it 100% worth being a teacher. Most days. ; )

  2. Patricia J Holloway Says:

    I enjoyed reading about all these flowers. This is the stuff that makes teaching students a worthwhile occupation!

  3. Melanie Meehan Says:

    You get a pass on your OLW with a post like this. Thanks for sharing these moments. I am TOTALLY putting comma twins into my pocket and sharing that as soon as I can! Love it. I also love the idea of moments like this like a bouquet. (Moment is my 2021 word, and I didn’t even purposely write it there. That makes me happy!)

    • Lainie Levin Says:

      Thanks! Next year I’ll be more timely with my OLW. And…moment. Yes! There’s so much about that. I’m going to click over now and read YOUR post!

      And…anytime. Take any idea you want and put it in your pocket. That’s what I tell my kiddos to do with the stories I tell. Roll them into a ball and put them in your pocket. (Some prefer sticking them in their shoes or behind their ears, but I caution against up the nose ; )

  4. Anna Maria Says:

    Are those snowdrops?!

    I love the comma twins comment. That made me smile but also miss having those moments with my kids in my classroom.

    • Lainie Levin Says:

      Good eye, Anna Maria! I snapped this photo last spring. When my boys were little, we’d always be on the lookout for signs of spring – it was always a REALLY BIG DEAL at our house. Now they’re older but I still can’t shake the tradition!

      And yes. It was a small moment that made me smile too – which is how I know I will always need a kid fix. I’m no longer a classroom teacher, which I still grieve, but I’m grateful I can still work directly with students.

  5. Fran Haley Says:

    Lainie, I love the sweet, simple joys in all of this – I can see the kids and sense their joy as well as your own. Most of all I love your next- to-last lines on there being so many flowers that it’s hard to choose just a few. A perfect metaphor for those simple joys, always abounding, all around us. I’ll be interested to see what your OLW is, if you choose one. I wasn’t in the frame of mind to choose one (after having chosen “reclamation” in 2020). But – when I went to my planner on January 1, there was a quote in tiny, tiny script about awe – how to find it, how to make it happen. How do I ignore that?Honestly I experience awe regularly, but there’s something about intentionally looking for it in every day, inviting it every day, seeing doors that I can open for it every day. Awe is always there, as part of “the bounty around me,” as you say … so that is how my word claimed me this year. Your post, for me, radiates with awe found in daily moments.

    • Lainie Levin Says:

      Fran, thank you! You know, timing is always funny. I posted this, then just listened to the latest episode of This American Life. Poet Ross Gay was featured throughout, as was his quote: “It’s a negligence if people don’t take the time to honor the things that they take delight in, but more importantly, that they share the things that they take delight in. And if you don’t do that, there’s a loss there. You have to do it to achieve humanity.”

      I also love your OLW. I’ve discovered (as I’ll reveal) that mine connects to this post. Loosely, but it connects…

      • Fran Haley Says:

        Gay’s words – powerful. True. I love his quote. Life comes with inevitable losses; why do we create more for ourselves? Eagerly anticipating your OLW reveal… why I am I not at all surprised that there are connecting threads…. 🙂

  6. cmargocs Says:

    You were right to name your post as a bundle of joy today; how wise of you to gather them up and place them here, a thing to remember for always. I found my smile growing wider as the list continued (and had to look up appositives, as it’s been awhile since I diagrammed a sentence with such). How lucky to have so many sparks flying among your students at one time, how wonderful it is that we get to share in the joy. Thank you!

    • Lainie Levin Says:

      Thank you! Yes, my kids are ALWAYS astounding and amazing me in more ways I can count.

      And…it’s funny you mention having to look up appositives. I often have to go back and research my roots often, especially when folks introduce a poetic form/device I can’t remember!

  7. On Days After: Picking Up The Pieces | Soapbox: The Way I see Things Says:

    […] Just another WordPress.com weblog « Offerings: Slice of Life Tuesday […]

  8. One Little Word…For Now | Soapbox: The Way I see Things Says:

    […] Thankfully, I haven’t lost my ability to notice and name those things, big and small, that provide me with delight, that offer reasons to get out of bed each day, that […]

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