Tom devotes a good chunk of the book to six practices that he believes help readers to delve deeply into texts. One of those practices has to do with poetry. Specifically, memorizing poetry. Tom talks about how poetry works its way deeply into our hearts and then surfaces when we need it most.(Slow reading) has to do with the relationship we have with what we read, with the quality of attention we bring to our reading, with the investment we are willing to make. It is based on the belief that good writing is never consumed, never fully understood, and that though we often read for the efficient extraction of information, this extraction is not the most meaningful or pleasurable reading we do. Slow reading repays even repeated readings and speaks to us in new ways with each engagement..." (p. 2)There is usually an ebb and flow to slow reading, times when we are immersed in the narrative flow, and times when we pause to reflect or reread or just savor the moment…Although I am convinced that slow reading is essential for real comprehension, it is also clearly crucial to the deep pleasure we take in reading and the power of reading to change us. As John Miedma eloquently puts it: "By opening yourself to a book in this way, you invite ideas and feelings that enrich and expand your interiority. Reading is the making of a deeper self." (3)
A Lazy ThoughtThe last three lines of this poem, "It takes a lot of slow to grow" have been echoing in my head all week long. We are about four weeks from state testing. This is the time of year when the "Power Standards" hanging next to my desk seem to glow like a neon sign. And the things I have not yet taught (partly because they are in Unit 11 in the math book and we are only finishing unit 7, which, according to the pacing charts is exactly where we are supposed to be) seem to greatly outweigh the things I have. And I feel like that scene in the old CHARLIE AND THE CHOCOLATE FACTORY movie, when they are all on the boat in the dark, and the boat is moving faster and faster and faster, and everyone is screaming and hanging on for dear life. And I have to fight the temptation to teach faster, faster, faster, and remind myself again and again and again, "It takes a lot of slow to grow…"
By Eve Merriam
There go the grownups
To the office,
To the store.
Don’t grow up
It takes a lot
"Hi.""Hi.""How are you?""Fine.""Me too.""What are you doing?"On and on and on…