by Kristin Ziemke, a member of The Educator Collaborative
In September: The Book Chapter You Can’t Live Without
Each year, on Labor Day weekend I pull from the bookshelf my tattered copy of Reading With Meaning by Debbie Miller. This is the professional book that changed my career. It is the title that I need to have near (I have a copy at home, at school and in my car!). It is the book that calms my nerves and channels my excitement at the start of each year.
Whether you teach first grade or seventh, Debbie’s chapter two titled “In September” should be required reading. This chapter is a friendly manual for what matters most–creating a culture and climate for thinking. In eight pages Debbie provides a rationale for “why,” outlines strategies for building relationships, and invites the reader to trust and empower students.
“When our vision of community expands to create a culture and climate for thinking (Perkins 1993)–when rigor, inquiry, and intimacy become key components of our definition–it’s essential that we work first to build genuine relationships, establish mutual trust and create working literate environments.” (2002)
Watch this video to hear more about this chapter and how it’s had a lasting impact on me as an educator.