Teachers for Teachers | Slice of Life: We Could Read it Together
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Slice of Life: We Could Read it Together


A notification pops up on my computer. I glance to see what the notification is about. It is Evernote – Tammy is adding a voice note to our What Are You Reading folder.

I love that we have so many shared folders through Evernote and Dropbox. When I am working alone a notification shows me what Tammy is doing. I can listen in to her thinking or see what she is working on whenever I want. It allows us to collaborate without being together and without interrupting each other if we are working on different projects. I choose to leave the notifications on most days, but if I need to really focus I can turn them off. Typically it is a good break and often something I hear or read helps me with whatever is on my “to-do” list. It is a good brain break!

She is leaving a voice note about Pax. That is on my TBR stack. I wonder what she thought of it.

We both read the same books. When we are done, we leave voice notes to each other. We share our response, our ideas and our connections to each book. If we have an idea for a classroom or coaching connection we include that too. Tammy then takes our shared perspectives and writes our It’s Monday! posts. I don’t usually listen to her voice notes until after I read the book.

I will listen to part of it. If I think it will ruin the book for me I will stop. I hit play and sit back to listen to her thoughts. Her first sentence is “Ryan is going to love this book! I kept thinking of him as I read it.” I hit pause and decide it is best to wait.

 Later that day I tell Ryan, my 14-year-old son, about Pax and Tammy’s recommendation.

I haven’t read it yet, but I was wondering if you want to read it too. You can have it first if you want.

We could read it together, he suggests.

I am so thankful I listened to Tammy’s voice note – I know that reading with my 14-year-old is going to become close to impossible in the high school years ahead. I treasure this opportunity, close my laptop, and begin reading.

Pax is an incredible book – if you want to read our thoughts on it check out our It’s Monday post about it.


Thank you to StaceyTaraDanaBetsyAnnaBeth, Kathleen, and Deb for this space for us to share our stories each day in March.  Be sure to visit Two Writing Teachers to read more Slice of Life posts and consider joining this community





  • Avatar
    Karen Szymusiak
    Posted at 11:25h, 14 March Reply

    I can’t wait to read Pax. I have been hearing so much about it. I am waiting to borrow it from a friend. I love how the two of you leave voice messages after reading a book. What a great way to share your thinking. I know you will love reading it with your son. When my daughter was in late middle school we read a book together – side by side on the couch – taking turns reading. It was a special time for us. Oh, how I miss those days. Thanks for sharing, Clare.

  • Avatar
    Posted at 12:04h, 14 March Reply

    I am reading Pax now!! Started it last night and already I can see that it will linger with me. Have fun reading it with your son. It will be an experience that will stay with you forever.

  • Avatar
    lynne dorfman
    Posted at 12:22h, 14 March Reply

    I, too, am reading Pax. I was intrigued by the cover and now I am enjoying it as a nice break from professional reads and writing.

    I use Dropbox with Diane as we wrote Grammar Matters and now this new book. I would like to try Voxer and Evernote as well. Sounds like you and Tammy are an instant book club! Enjoy reading with Ryan!

  • Avatar
    Posted at 13:31h, 14 March Reply

    My kids and I still read together, Clare, even though they don’t live in our house anymore. We are always passing books and articles back and forth – and I have a feeling that you’ve built this same relationships with your children; reading love begins at home, after all.

  • Avatar
    Julie Johnson
    Posted at 00:14h, 15 March Reply

    I just finished Pax last night and LOVED it. It’s going to be my next read aloud with my fifth graders. How wonderful that your son suggested you read it together. That’s the absolute best!

  • Avatar
    Karen Terlecky
    Posted at 01:40h, 15 March Reply

    I began Pax, and realized I wanted it to be one of my spring break books, so it will be in the car when we leave Friday. I think the collaborative way you and Tammy work is wonderful. But the greatest part of this post is the fact that you and Ryan read it aloud together. What a gift.

  • Avatar
    Dalila Eckstein
    Posted at 02:33h, 15 March Reply

    The thought of you sharing a book with your son made my heart so happy. My son, as you know, is grown and living far way, so I no longer get to read with him, although we talk books, even from afar. Sharing books with others is such a wonderful gift and point of connection. After reading about your exchanges with Tammy about Pax, I will need to move this book to the top of my TBR. Maybe I will take it along when I travel next week…to see my son! Thanks for sharing!

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