The Book of Awesome

In the midst of a crazy, busy week at school, I found myself invited to one of our grade 7/8 classrooms as a guest listener to hear the students share their latest writing assignments. Their teacher had been sharing selections from, “The Book of Even More Awesome”. The stories and the style of the writing resonated with the students and they wanted to develop their own collection of “Awesome” experiences. The students had selected experiences within their life and wrote about them. The teacher then spent a great deal of time working through the process of identifying the success criteria for a well written paragraph. The students then worked through the process of self assessment and peer assessment as each reworking of their paragraph demonstrated noticeable improvement.
The final copies, which were presented to me, were shared with such pride and I loved how they praised each other’s work. The students had been engaged in the writing process and more importantly, they were invested in the improvement process. As I listened to their stories, I was impressed with their use of exemplary vocabulary and their ability to evoke emotion and imagery.

I was inspired so much by their writing that I went out on that weekend and purchased a copy of Pasricha’s books and started to read his blog, “1000 Awesome Things”.

Since that day, I have started to take note of those memorable moments in my day. During the school day, awesome things are always happening ~ everything from students coming to my office to share their work, smiles and silent finger wave greetings from students as they walk through the halls, staff coming and sharing success stories about a student finally “getting it”, walking into classrooms and being warmly greeted by students and having them anxiously call me over to share their activity, spontaneous hugs from those who seem to know that’s exactly what I need at that moment and the list goes on and on.

As Pasricha states in his book, “when bad news washes over you and when the pain sponges and soaks in, I really hope you feel like you have two choices. 1. Swish and swirl in the gloom and doom forever or 2. Grieve and face the future with newly sober eyes”.

Looking for those “awesome” moments continues to keep a smile on my face and hopefully that smile becomes contagious.

What are some of the awesome things that happen in your life?