Sunday, April 24, 2016

Anniversary Memories and Word Study - #SOL 4/24/16

I love the concept of celebrating events from the week on Saturday (or usually for me, on Sunday). Focusing on the positives of our personal and professional lives is wonderful. Thanks to Ruth for each week hosting celebrations from us all. What a gift to have a place each week to celebrate! 

Personal celebration:

This past week, my husband and I celebrated our 31st anniversary. When I posted one of our wedding pictures on Facebook to commemorate the day, several of our cousins chimed in with memories of our wedding. One of the comments that made me smile came from my side of the family:

I remember that day well. Your wedding was the first ever Wallace cousins' party.

I love my cousins and I so distinctly remember where they were sitting, and how much fun they were having. A memory like that is so precious to me as I think about the huge family to which we belong - their parents and my mom came from a family of eleven brothers and sisters. As we've lost members of this family I cherish, that comment really resonated with me. The importance of family cannot be overstated.

But back to my husband - like most married couples, the road to getting to 31 years hasn't always been a smooth one. Laughter, tears, happiness, sorrow, celebrations, grief, anger, forgiveness, illness, good health - so many stops along this road. But I love the ability to look back at all those events, and know we are better people because of each one. I feel very fortunate to be continuing on life's journey with this man.

Professional celebration:

I was collaborating with a teacher on word study the past two weeks. We were fine-tuning his instruction about words, and getting it aligned with our district's word study parameters. We planned and co-taught a focus study on the Greek and Latin roots: dif-, dis-, and di-.

We had a lot of fun talking about words, observing them, and connecting to other words we might know because we knew these words. Due to state assessments, we only got to co-teach for 5 days; about half of the entire focus study. But one of the strategies we practiced while I was there, was the syllable strategy: sounding out a longer word, and spelling it by syllables. They loved knowing they could take a larger word and break it down into smaller, more manageable pieces.

On my last day in their classroom, I was presented with a card that they had designed, written, and signed. I'm putting the picture of two of the pages below to show just why I was so touched by their learning and thoughtfulness:

Have a wonderful week, and I hope there are celebrations waiting to happen for you this coming week!


  1. Happy Anniversary, again, Karen. 31 years is a milestone, & really I guess each year is, don't you think? I loved hearing about your collaboration, and that clever, clever thank you. It is DI-vine!

  2. Happy anniversary - 31 is a huge milestone!

  3. Hats off to 31 years of marriage and to many memories along the way! Precious card from the class you co-taught. Lovely to see them demonstrate their learning even though they were dis-appointed at your departure.

  4. Happy Anniversary and I totally agree with your statement on the importance of family.

  5. Hi Karen! I LOVED your Choice Literacy video on the Greek and Latin word study mini lesson where the students provided the words for the anchor chart. Is there any way you could provide some more information about how that entire routine works? I'm specifically interested in how you launch the routine at the beginning and teach kids where to find the words at home, how (or if) you hold kids accountable for finding the words, and if there is any sort of individual practice or assessment throughout the year on the words. We really want to try this but felt we needed a little more info before we tried it! Thank you!