It’s a New School Year: What to Expect at Literate Lives

Back to School

School houseHappy New Year!

September always feels like the true new year. Maybe that’s because nearly all my life the school year has determined mine and my children’s schedules.

What You Can Expect at Literate Lives This Year

I have spent some time reflecting over the summer and have determined a number of features I would like to commit to for this upcoming school year.

For the 2015-2016 school year, readers may anticipate a variety of blog posts and the following regular features:

  • “Play with Your Words” writing prompts to inspire you, your students, or your family to write in a variety of genres
  • “Reading Response Exercises” to develop the skill of extending your understanding of and responding to reading, in writing or discussion
  • “Poetry Writing Prompts” to engage in work play, capture memories, develop word choice and writing fluency skills, and just plain have fun
  • Introduction of  Greek and Latin roots to develop vocabulary and new-word “attack” skills
  • Quotes to ponder
  • And my monthly, annotated reading log

Why Might You Want to Follow Literate Lives?

You love to read.

You love to write.

You have children you want to encourage to read and write.

You are a teacher eager to help you students improve their reading and writing skills.

My Hope

My heartfelt desire is to help you nurture a reading and writing lifestyle, be it at school or in the home. Literacy is the key that unlocks the door to bright tomorrows. A committed adult can make a world of difference in a child’s life. I hope to help you make that difference and wish you a wonderful back-to-school experience and a rich and literate life!

It Doesn’t Feel Like Summer Unless…

130001114Now, This is Summer

I’ve never actually written out a “Must Do in the Summer” checklist (at least not one of summer pleasures–to do lists, yes, but not summer joys). However, maybe it was because of the limitations of my concussion recovery, as I found myself doing things I loved to do each summer, I’d get that feeling, “Now, this is summer.” So finally, back in early August, I decided to write it down.

It Doesn’t Feel Like Summer Unless I…  Checklist

  • wake to cool morning air whispering in the trees outside our window
  • sit outside in the morning and read
  • eat outdoors
  • sip blended/iced drinks
  • eat tomato sandwiches made with homegrown tomatoes
  • have an overnighter with my granddaughters
  • revise a novel
  • stay up past midnight to finish a book
  • sleep until nearly noon
  • draw
  • craft something
  • reorganize some part of our home
  • attend the early, hymn-singing service at church
  • go to Silver Falls with my daughter and granddaughters
  • visit my parents
  • travel in the mountains
  • wander along a mountain lake
  • visit high elevations
  • wander along a gurgling stream
  • write poetry in response to the beauty around me
  • go to the beach
  • sit under a shady tree and revise a manuscript
  • attend a writing conference

I’ve colored the things I’ve done a cool, mountain blue.

Time to Re-evaluate

Despite the fact I did not finish the rough drafts of the two novels I had been working on through the school year (and had hoped to finish this summer), when I look at the summer through this lens, I must admit, headaches and all, I have had a pretty great summer.

How About You?

How was your summer?

What items did I leave off my It Doesn’t Feel Like Summer Unless… Checklist that you would have put on yours?


Literate Lives Reading Log: July 2015

  • Innocent Traitor by Alison Weir~fascinating historical fiction told from multiple (and I mean multiple) points of view, making the execution as intriguing as the story.
  • Innocent Traitor.Alison WeirTears of Pearl by Tasha Alexander~exotic, exciting historical mystery set in Constantinople!
  • Tears of Pearl.Tasha AlexanderMountain Sanctuary by Lenora Worth~a sweet romance
  • Mountain Sanctuary.Lenora WorthAdam of the Road by Elizabeth Janet Gray~gripping, Newbery-winning medieval tale with an endearing young minstrel-protagonist. Read this one with your kids.510Adam of the Road.E.J.Gray
  • Happy Reading!