I Am Just Like Her

I am not a classroom teacher anymore, but I am still teaching and learning. So when students send me writing, I imagine it is because they want someone else to spend time with their words. When students send you their work, they may be asking for feedback, or simply want someone in addition to teachers and parents, to care to read and listen. There is no grade attached, no threats or consequences, but the stakes seem just as high.


Who am I but another writer wondering where to lay my words? However, to a young writer, I am (not as young of) a writer, and we both have something we are crafting. We build community with each other, exchanging ourselves in digital letter, handwriting on her written work. And I suppose I am support, someone to confide in, someone who might offer encouragement and a critical lens. But in essence, I am just like her, writing.

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Categories: Writing

5 Comments on “I Am Just Like Her”

  1. February 20, 2014 at 7:09 am #

    I feel warm having read this.

    • February 20, 2014 at 8:43 am #

      So nice of you to say. It is wonderful when we as writers have a person to bounce ideas off of, exchange our work with someone we trust. Other than our blogging community with WordPress (smile), do you have a positive memory of getting feedback for your work when you were a younger writer or even now? If so, how did that feedback make you feel?

      • February 20, 2014 at 8:54 am #

        To get extremely whimsical here, the most positive feedback I’ve ever received is when my kindergarten teacher gave me a pen license several years ahead of the other students, along with a decorative pen. She told me she saw promise in my crude short stories at the time and strongly encouraged that I continue. You wouldn’t think that such a simple gesture would take me on a journey spanning from that point until now, but it was truly a prime example of chaos theory. Imagine if every teacher nourished students in this way.

      • February 20, 2014 at 9:10 am #

        That is a good one. Now I am warm inside! Yes, that teacher saw something in you and allowed you to flourish, encouraged you, gave you permission. That is such a big deal–to give someone permission to be engaged, creative, interested in something. It can be a small gesture or just someone taking the time to engage, but it clearly can have lasting effects.

        I do wish we had an education system that supported more of this, whole and human exchanges between teachers and students. And in that same breath I realize teachers have a lot to shoulder so they can not do it all. As an artist educator, I am so honored to dwell in spaces where I can engage, exchange with young writers in very authentic ways.

        Thank you for sharing your memory and please do come back to visit “life and write” soon.

      • February 20, 2014 at 9:14 am #

        Absolutely. I’ll be back.

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