Pumping Up for March Slice of Life Challenge!

It’s time to start talking and imagining and getting excited about the 6th Annual Slice of Life Challenge. Here are a few things to begin considering.

  1. If you’ve never participated, now is the time! You’ll need to start a blog. I promise you can do this. If you have any questions, just ask. Stacey or I can help you or connect you with a “seasoned slicer” who will answer your questions. Don’t let the fear of starting a blog keep you from doing the challenge.
  2. On the issue of fear: we all have it. Every single writer — professional or not — is scared of putting words on the page. Anyone who says otherwise doesn’t for-real write. Maybe you aren’t afraid of the techy-side of things. Maybe you are afraid of your ability to write. Maybe you are afraid of your stories being worthy. Maybe you are afraid of adding one more thing to your to-do list. Maybe being afraid is just what we need to write. I know when I’m afraid, it means I’m writing with honesty and authenticity. I also know you’re not the kind of person who lets a little scared get in the way.
  3. This challenge began with Stacey’s and my passion for teachers of writers and wanting to support them in becoming more insightful teachers of writers. The best way to do this is to be teachers who write. We are grateful that others, from outside the field of education, have joined us. This makes our community even richer and helps us, as teachers, understand lives outside of school even more clearly. Many teachers have also extended this challenge to their classrooms. This year we are growing our vision of the challenge to help connect slicing-classrooms. However, our hearts remain with our original intent — becoming teachers who write. Please don’t place this expectation on your classroom if you aren’t going to participate yourself. This defeats the purpose of the challenge and perpetuates myths about writing taught by teachers who don’t write themselves. You may want to consider starting a classroom blog to share student slices and a personal blog to share your slices. Of course, they can also both be housed on the same blog and you make two posts each day — your slice of life and a student slice of life.
  4. There will be a new button color this year, as well as a different version of the button for slicing-classrooms. We’ll give more details about the slicing-classroom procedures when we reveal the buttons.
  5. Recently I “hung out” (via Google Hangouts) with Franki Sibberson’s classroom to share my excitement about the challenge and encourage them to consider joining this year. We talked about the challenge, defining it, and we talked about what they might gain from the challenge. Then they asked questions. Here is their blog post, written by a student, documenting our experience. (Check it out & leave them a comment!)

Finally, and most importantly, talk, Talk, TALK about the Slice of Life Challenge. If you’ve never participated, rope someone in and join together. If you have, start pushing it on others. There is nothing bad that will happen (other than the dusting and vacuuming may have to wait). Let’s start talking now…leave a comment and let us know your thoughts about the challenge.