Thursday, April 9, 2009

Every once in a while . . .

Every once in a while there is a kid in one of my classes who is simply fabulous at doing the creative writing assignments that I give. This year, one of my junior high students always does the best job. I look forward to reading everything that he writes. It is always witty and funny and above the norm.

The other day he told me that he does not want to be a teacher, but if he was, he would love reading the creative 'stuff' that students write. I realized that he always puts so much into each assignment that he does not even know that there are students who are turning in just enough to 'get by.' I gave them the 'Me A-Z' assignment that I did on my personal blog a few days ago. I thought I would share what he wrote.

A-dventures: Stories and movies about adventures are always good. Adventure books are my favorite.

B-ananas: Bananas are the grossest fruits. They are always brown and mushy. They squeeze through my teeth and just give me the chills.

C-laustrophobia: I am very claustrophobic. Tube slides? No! Have I ever asked you if I can get in your suitcase and come with you? Did not think so!

D-ownhill dips: Near Lake Upsilon there is a dip that feels like a roller coaster. I love these bumps. They should make them on purpose.

E-agles: Eagles are simply the best. People train them to land on their arm. That is the coolest thing ever.

F-irefighter: I want to be a volunteer firefighter. My cousin is a firefighter, and he really loves it.

G-rades: Grades are not the most important thing to me. They are important, but not my main concern every day. I still get good grades anyway.

H-alo: Halo is the most ultimate video game. I am really good at it. It is not what people think it is - saving the world from aliens. Haha

I-ce cream: Ice cream is a food I eat in my own way. I let it melt into cream, then I mix it and eat it. It tastes a lot different.

J-uice Box: Juice boxes are lame. One gulp and they are gone. At carnivals, etc., they cost like a dollar.

K-ikomen: A sauce that can be found in the Chinese restaurant in a near by town. This is a sauce that has a name I just love to say and make fun of.

L-eo: He is the coolest janitor ever, and he is very mysterious. He drives this machine around to get the floors clean and that makes the school stink.

M-osquitos: No one likes them. They have no point in life. They are gross and annoying. Period.

N-eopets: Neopets are pointless. I do not even know what they are, but they sound dumb.

O-reos: Oreos are the best cookies. Dip them in milk, and they are delicious. Sadly, they run out fast in the cookie box.

P-arellel parking: Everyone makes it sound really hard. I have never done it, (besides video games) and it does not seem hard at all. It just takes practice.

Q-uarters: Quarters are very handy to have around. Whether you are at college doing laundry or at the Chicken Hut playing video games, they are useful.

R-ise Against: Rise against is one of my favorite bands. They have really good songs, and I listen to them all the times.

S-oup: I burned my leg with a pot of soup. I had blisters and everything.

T-rampolines: Trampolines are the best outdoor activity. I wish I could have one, but apparently, "Our insurance does not support that."

U-niverse: It is the most interesting thing to think about. What is really out there?

V-eternarian: I always wanted to be one growing up. I love animals (not insects).

W-ater: Water is the greatest thing to have after spending five hours outside playing kick-the-can. Ice cold water!

X-rays: Looking at broken bones by using an x-ray is the coolest doctor related thing.

Y-outube: I can spend countless hours searching random stuff. Youtube always makes my day.

Z-oos: I could visit a zoo every day and never get bored.

What makes this so good to me? It is not the sentence structure or the length. It is not the wording choice or the punctuation. It is the fact that one of my students can use the letters A-Z (it is a lot, just try it) and come up with interesting, diverse, nouns that describe him to a 't'. (I know many adults that have a hard time describing themselves in a job interview.)

This students is a fabulous musician, a talented athlete, and can easily find diverse words that sum him up. He was able to talk about his likes and his dislikes, his goals and his future, his family life and his past, and give the reader a little piece of him through his writing. That is one of my main goals for my students. I want them to be able to use writing for themselves, for their lives.

To quote 'G', "Grades are not that important to me. They are important, but not my main concern every day." He did this assignment for the sake of the activity, not just to get a grade. Perfect, in my book.


  1. LOVE this post!

    P.S. D-ownhill brothers and sister and I used to be thrilled every time our parents took us on the back roads of northern Wisconsin where the hills were the cheapest form of entertainment around. That kid is awesome. :)

  2. This is a great idea. And what awesome answers too, i like the G answer too :]

  3. What a great assignment! I especially liked "L" for Leo the "coolest" and "very mysterious" janitor.

  4. The assignment is relevent to them, reminiscent of a facebook or myspace application that is popular with them.

  5. Hey, just a little note to let you know that the name and blog title have changed, but I'm back to writing and following blogs!
    -formerly TeachEnEsp

  6. Hey, I'm writing to wish you well. I hope your summer is going well! I have changed blogs AGAIN but I'm actually sticking with the new one for a long while. New job=new start. Hope to hear from you soon!

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