Every year, I choose a certain day of the week to tutor some of my students after school. My fellow teachers and I identify those who we feel could use a little extra support and work with them each week. This semester, I chose to focus on one particular student, I’ll call her Eevee (she has a bit of a Pokemon addiction). This student really struggles with spelling. We have been focusing on sight words, making sure all of those are spelled correctly, then using resources (this girl LOVES words and has a particular fondness for dictionaries) to find the spelling of others. She’s made a lot of progress, which as a teacher, I am tremendously happy to see.
Though she has a difficult time with spelling and writing conventions (punctuation, capitalization, etc.), this girl is a WRITER. A few weeks ago after school, she shared a piece of writing about some of her favorite Pokemon characters (and their nemeses, of course). Listening to this young lady read her story aloud to me, I would have sworn she had a Pokemon novel in her hand. (I’m assuming those exist.) In fact, I asked her if the story line was something she had seen on TV. “No, I wrote it,” she responded matter-of-factly. “They’re the stories I tell myself at night before I got to bed.”
Of course they are. Future writer, right?
So lately, Miss Eevee and I have been writing buddies. We edit a chapter of her novel together, then she uses the classroom computer to type it up. While she works on typing her novel, I am sitting nearby working on my own. We exchange ideas and laughs, and we are able to encourage one another as well.
The only problem now? What to do when May 21 rolls around.