The inspiration for this blog came from one of the last sessions Rita and Beth attended at NCTE in November 2016. The crowds had dwindled as they made their way to the final session where Rita was presenting at a roundtable. During Rita’s break, they had a chance to sit down with a writing group that had worked together for several years and shared written pieces for feedback, critique, and support through face-to-face and electronic channels.
Both Rita and Beth have wanted to write more and have tried their hands at blogging, but nothing has ever “stuck” or inspired them to write on a regular basis. Immediately they latched on to the idea of having a writing group within Dublin City Schools that could be the inspiration/cheerleaders/editors needed to become life-long writers. They gathered together a group of educators that they admired and wanted to partner with on this journey.
When the group met in 2017, they decided to write and publish the writing as a blog. The group settled on the title “Passionately Educating” because this best describes what they do. Interestingly, the group is diverse. There is a curriculum leader, Lori Marple; a middle school principal, Corinne Evans; a high school literacy coach, Rita Shaffer; a high school English language arts teacher, Kara Belden; and two middle school English language arts teachers, Rachel Polacek and Beth Honeycutt.
The purpose of the blog is to reflect on teaching/leading, to share new learning, to push ourselves as learners, to develop as individual writers, and to collaborate and form a safe writing community. We know that the best educators are readers, writers, and learners just like the students in their classrooms and we are excited to begin this journey. We would love any feedback!