Saturday, June 23, 2012

Grace McCormick: ...Where I'm Free


Grace & Three of Her Notebooks


Today I (Amy, blog administrator), am so happy to bring you Grace McCormick from Iroquois Intermediate School in Elma, NY! Grace just finished fourth grade and was kind enough to take a few minutes on her last day of school to share her notebooks with us. I asked her to do so because her teacher, Mrs. Harvey, told me what an avid and passionate notebook-keeper Grace has been throughout the school year.

In the photo above, you can see Grace holding three notebooks. The little butterfly one is new, one she bought for herself on a school field trip to a museum. And she has many more notebooks at home. Grace has been keeping notebooks since kindergarten, and she has a bin of them at her house.

As you can read here, Grace writes for today and also for the future. Just like many authors, Graces writes about her writing and how it matters in her life.


On this photo page, we see pictures that Grace has collected and saved. If you lift each one up, you can read about her and her brothers when they were younger, just like a lift-the-flap book! Grace is a memory-keeper, a saver, a document-er of today and yesterday. And if you compare the photo on the upper right, of the page with her photo atop this post, you will see the same smiling eyes!


Above we can read how Grace sees "each day as a puzzle." Notebooks are a wonderful place for thinking, for figuring out what matters to us and what we believe. By writing about mistakes and regrets and the "puzzle" of life, Grace makes decisions about who she will be and how she will approach her days. 


This a list of some of Grace's thoughts about her notebooks. The first line, "All my notebooks are the only place where I'm free" rings true to me as well. There is nothing like an empty page to free one's writing soul. And anything you love can go into a notebook - such freedom indeed!


Grace shared with me that she has been inspired by her teacher Mrs. Melinda Harvey to go back and read her old notebooks. (Mrs. Harvey told the class how she revisited her college notebook!) And the school principal, Mrs. Amy Stanfield, has encouraged Grace by inviting her to read her writing on the announcements and by giving her a new notebook and favorite pen.

Grace credits her mom with encouraging her love of writing as well. "My mom told me to bring this puzzle entry to show my teacher, she had me share it with the class and Mrs. Stanfield, I read it on the announcements, to you, and now I'm on your blog!"

Talking with Grace, I once again learned the value of passion and commitment. Those who write more will come to write better and better. When we write, we learn what we think. We treasure the past. We discover who we are.

I feel lucky to have met this young notebook keeper, and I look forward to watching where she goes with her writing!

In honor of Grace and her love of writing, I will send a copy of Ralph Fletcher's A WRITER'S NOTEBOOK to a commenter on today's post. Please just leave a comment by Saturday, June 30 to be entered in a drawing. And yes, I am sending a copy to Grace too. Thank you, Grace!

22 comments:

  1. Wow Grace! Thank you for sharing your notebooks with us. They (you) are so inspiring, full of passion, and bouncing with your energy. You should be so proud of yourself for living life as a writer. Seeing your notebooks helped me get a sense of what my students are capable of if I as a teacher give them the tools. KEEP WRITING!

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  2. What a fabulous collection of your thoughts. It will be so much fun to read through them again when you're older. This summer, in between writing, you can try making some notebooks on your own. Here's a link to a website that has instructions for all types of books, some of which would make great notebooks. The site owner, Susan Kapuscinski Gaylord, teaches fun ways to preserve your writing.

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    1. Laddy Ha Ha /GraceJune 25, 2012 at 10:37 AM

      That website sounds like fun mabe i'll check it out somtime!thank you for the comment!i love my collection too!!!

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  3. Go Grace! Keep on keeping notebooks! Thanks for sharing yours with us. :)

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    1. Laddy HaHa/GraceJune 24, 2012 at 6:33 PM

      Thank you for the comment and the incouragement!!!i'm very grateful for the 7 comments.Thank You!

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  4. What a wonderful glimpse into a young writer's thoughts! I am so impressed that you've been keeping journals since kindergarten, Grace, and that you still have them all. You will love going back to read them as you get older and become a better and better and better writer. You will have so many ideas! I hope my little boys will find as much joy in writing as you do. Thank you for sharing!

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    1. I think i'll enjoy looking back into them to!I hope kids enjoy writing as much as i do!!!
      THANK YOU!!!

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  5. Another great post, Amy! I am so thrilled to see Grace highlighted in your special spot! She is an insightful, humorous young lady with so much to share! Thank you, Grace for your willingness to share so openly!

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    1. Grace/ Lady HaHAJune 24, 2012 at 5:11 PM

      Thank you Mrs.Harvey!!!
      All the comments meant so much to me! I can't wait to write about this! You ,Amy and Mrs.Stanfeald made my world go WILD !!!YOU guys inspired me to write more! Mrs.Harvey you have gave me a bunch of idea's from writing work shop THANKYOU!!!

      Lady HaHa!

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    2. Dear Grace,

      I was inspired by your notebooks. Thank you for sharing them. You reminded me how important it is to have a place where you can write and think freely. A notebook is like a good friend who you can confide in, a buddy to hang out with, an angel to lift you out of the world with it's lined white wings.

      You are too cool. I think I am going to write in my notebook now. You inspired me.

      Barry Lane

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  6. Thank you to Grace for sharing her notebooks. I hope that the spark she has will continue growing into a big writing flame.

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  7. This is what it's truly about. Young people giving their thoughts and creations to the world. Simply wondrous!

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  8. Thank you Grace for sharing some of your writing in your notebooks. I too am impressed that you've kept them so long. I've kept journals since middle school, but would love to read some things I wrote earlier, as you will love & appreciate the words you kept during these years. Terrific stuff to see, & to inspire.

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  9. what wonderful thoughts she has, i'm glad they are getting written down.. that way they aren't lost <3

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    1. Laddy Ha Ha/GraceJune 26, 2012 at 11:17 AM

      thanks i would not like any of my thoughts to get lost

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  10. She is AMAZINGLY wise for her age. Thank you for sharing her notebooks with us...she put a lot into perspective for me.

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  11. It is so wonderful to see Gracie's writing and notebooks. I am so proud of you for sharing a personal part of yourself with everyone. Keep thinking and keep writing!!

    Mrs. G

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    1. Laddy Ha Ha You know how that isJune 29, 2012 at 8:32 AM

      MRS.G!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!oh umm I forgot to give you back Because Of winn Dixie.At leest I get to finish it!Well your the one who wants me to read this summer.And Mrs.Harvey if you read this I forgot to give you back the land and waters book lit so i'll have to stop by I was planing on it anyway!End of subject. How's your summer been? I have a riddel for you! A lady asked a maid what do you do if your kid wont poo? she responed If its your turn to clean the bathrooms you celibrate !!! LoL
      I used tex code !Ha Ha good bye!!! oh ya Thanks I could'nt sleep because of you ! I found out that you gave me a comment at bed time! I was on my ipod and i went on this websit i saw your name and freack out!!!THANK YOU MRS.G
      pleas respond! This dose'nt have spelling check dose it.

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  12. Enjoyed every bit here. full of personal emotions!!









    Laptop Specifications

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  13. Grace --
    Your notebooks are beautiful and inspiring. Thanks for sharing them with us.
    Ruth

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  14. Grace-

    You have a great amount of talent by the way you capture your thoughts on paper. We are very proud of you. Keep going with your work!!! Uncle Brett and Aunt Kathy

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  15. I love reading about passionate, enthusiastic young writers!

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