Jackie, Erika, Amy and I are excited to present at NCTE in Washington, D.C. on Saturday at 2:45 pm. Penny Kittle is our Chair. We are session J.44. Join us!
“I am the sum of my mentors,” writes Meenoo Rami in Thrive. As a student at Miami University in 2005, I had no idea how fortunate I was to have Tom Romano as one of my mentors. As a leader in educational writing, a teacher with his thumb on the pulse of research, and the giant who first introduced me to NCTE, Romano has always been my single biggest mentor.
As I thought for months about what I wanted to share with teachers regarding the readers-writers workshop at NCTE, I was reminded of an assignment I’d done in Romano’s class–to find the “red thread” of my teaching…my nonnegotiables regarding our profession. I dug for it in the depths of my hard drive.
Re-reading it, I laughed as I always do at my older writing, but then I smiled. Many of my nonnegotiables remain unchanged: sustained silent reading. Craft informed by research. Authenticity. Engagement is central. Model, model, model.
Tom Romano obviously did a damn good job as a mentor.
Those simple principles–plus my genuine passion for reading, and writing, and the joy I believe they can bring everyone–inform my practice day in and day out. They are supported by the research of Penny Kittle, Katie Wood Ray, Tom Newkirk, Kelly Gallagher, Donalyn Miller, Linda Rief, and more. I am the sum of those mentors, and in this season of giving thanks, I’m so grateful that I am. My students have found incredible success because I stand on the shoulders of those giants, and I can’t wait to share their stories at our session in Washington, D.C.