At the open house the other night, I saw a former student who is now in eighth grade. She had been tapped to serve as one of our school's "Ambassadors," eighth graders who welcome guests and guide them through the building when they visit.
This particular kid had been an avid reader when she was in my class, and so I asked her if she'd had a chance to read the third book in The Hunger Games trilogy. She told me that she hadn't even read the second book, yet, so before the night was over, she ducked into my room and grabbed the book from my class library. The next day, I found it on my desk with a note-- Loved it! Can't wait for the next one! I know she'll be by before school starts on Tuesday morning to borrow that next book, and that kind of stuff always makes me smile, because I like being part of a community of readers and writers, and I love helping kids get their hands on books they want to read.
Last week we heard through the grapevine that our school system is implementing a policy that forbids teachers from having non-school-issued furnishings in their classrooms. Couches, rockers, bean bags, pillows, and their like will have to be removed. Such a rule bothers me, because beyond making me get rid of the ways I have personalized the room for my students, it smacks of other changes to come. How long will it be before teachers are not allowed to have any books that aren't issued by the school system in their rooms, either?