Friday, February 28, 2014

Slice of Life-- More info!

I have had such a wonderful response from students and others about participating in the Slice of Life that I have decided to add a little more information to help!

First, there is a new blogging page, dedicated to only my student responses. You can view my blog and the responses from our guests on the Collins Cardinals page, but all students will be published on this new site. It is called "Slices from Pod 2" and can be accessed at I thought I would only be able to publish a few responses each day from students, but I will be publishing anyone that sends something in now!

Second, I have adjusted the expectations for publishing. Due to possible snow days and lack of Internet availability for everyone, I will be passing out paper for kids to write on each day. If you choose to send in your response on a certain day on the Internet, then you would just note that on that particular day of your journal and it will count. This way it is equal for everyone. I still want you to send your responses in so I can publish them, but this levels the playing field and lets everyone be eligible for a celebration at the end.

Last, keep tabs on reading others' work and commenting. One of the joys of blogging is getting comments from other people who read, so leave some encouraging comments for your friends in the comment section. Remember, no last names, please. Also, remember to keep others' feelings in mind when you comment. 

The most exciting announcement is that we are planning something extra-special for the students that write all 31 days! More details soon!!

**If you get stuck writing, remember the 6 tips Mrs. Williams gave in her video to us.
   1. Write about a single word, like kindness, sweet, nature, or family.
   2. Write about events that have impacted you recently or in the past.
   3. Respond to what you are reading.
   4. Write about what you are wondering.
   5. Respond to a quote you are inspired by--remember to tell who said it.
   6. Read other blogs to get ideas.
View the video again here:

Happy Writing, kids! The excitement starts tomorrow, and I am so proud of you already! You've inspired me and others with your enthusiasm! Keep up the great work. Check here tomorrow for the first posts!

--Miss Collins

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

The "Slice of Life" Pod 2 Challenge

Starting Saturday, the first day of March, I will be beginning a new challenge. Each day I will share a post that offers a "slice" of my life for you to read about. It's all part of a national movement called "A Slice of Life" created by a two writing teachers that felt that every day of life was valuable, special, and worth recording.

I was challenged by a friend to give it a try last year, and I chickened out. After all, writing EVERYDAY for a WHOLE MONTH...that's a LOT, right?! This year, however, when the same person asked me again to consider it, I changed my answer.

As I read more about the challenge (You can read about it here!), the more I began to see the benefits. What pushed me over the edge, though, was the fact that I could invite my students to participate along with me. What a wonderful idea-- to share "slices" of my life with the kiddos I love and to read more about their lives in return!

So, students, I'm officially issuing the challenge to Pod 2! Read on to find out how to be part of this special activity.

I will be posting a Google Form on my class website under the Comm Arts section. This is where you will submit your writing. You can submit anytime: at home, during my class if we have a moment, or from the computer lab here at school with permission. There will be a space to mark if you would like me to share your "slice" on my blog. I will try to share everyone that wants me to share at least once during the month.

I will be hosting a "Slice of Life" Celebration for the students who choose to take this journey with me. It will be during a lunch sometime the first week of April and will include "slices" of things Middle School students pizza, cake, etc! It will be a time to celebrate our accomplishment together and talk how the writing changed us.

To be invited to the party, follow these instructions: You must submit at least 16 times. That is once for every day we are in school in March. You can post any day you'd like (school days, weekends, or Spring Break) and skip as many days as you want in between, just as long as you have 16 submissions on 16 different days by March 31st. Each submission must be at least 10 sentences long and tell something about your life. I will give some examples in class before March. Please remember that nothing submitted at school or on a school website is ever private from your parents, guardians, or school faculty and staff. 

All that said, I AM EXCITED! I look forward to sharing my own life, reading about yours, and seeing how all of this writing changes all of us!

Post questions below or talk to me at school about any details you're wondering about. Happy Writing!

--Miss Collins

Monday, February 24, 2014

Student-led Conferences--Night 2

We had another wonderful night of student-led conferences at WCMS! I am so proud of the hard work the kids put into making the night so special for their parents. Their pride in their work just makes you smile! Great job, kids!!

Enjoy the pictures below of our smiling Pod 2 families!

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Valentine's Day in Pod 2 ( and a much needed thank you!)

Valentine's Day is the last holiday party at the middle school, and Pod 2 had a wonderful time celebrating on Friday! The time goes fast when our room volunteers plan so many fun activities for us to enjoy. This is a good time to say a big THANK YOU to all of the parents and family that sacrifice their time to make all the parties throughout the year such special experiences. The PTO volunteers give so much of themselves taking care of the details that make parties great, as well the many other activities and rewards that make school so much fun! Thanks, again, to all of you that contribute to WCMS in various ways! We hope you had a fabulous Valentine's Day!

Below are a few of the pictures I was able to catch of all the fun we had! I tried to get some of each room!