Slicing with the Two Writing Teachers community is a pleasure every week. Thanks to Stacey, Tara, Dana, Betsy, Beth and Anna!
In one of her handouts, Penny Kittle says that the teacher knows "the futility of writing for no other purpose than to turn in an assignment--what that does to
craft and joy and desire--and knows that voice comes from having something to say."
I guess I'll always be a teacher. I enter nearly every part (slice) of my life as one, and an experience this summer again makes me want to have a group so I can try something new. For several years, in the Poetry Friday community, there is a group that signs up to take part is what is called the Summer Swap. (There is also a winter one!) Tabatha Yeatts at The Opposite of Indifference created the idea, and manages us, sending the names in secret, setting dates, and we then anticipate wonderful poems arriving every few weeks in our mailboxes. It's wonderful to have someone write a poem personally meant for me. And it's even better to write for someone!
And that's where my idea is based. What if everyone in a class was assigned a person to write something for? It could be here at the beginning of the year when the community of learners forms. It doesn't have to be a poem, but that could happen later in the midst of a poetry group, too. Think how writing for a particular audience--a specific magazine, a younger buddy class, a group that specializes in one's favorite sport or hobby--motivates. So, wouldn't writing for a person that one knows, but perhaps will learn even more about, too, inspire?
Just another teacher thought!