Traveling on this hero’s journey personal quest with my students is an adventure in and of itself. We are still in the pre-writing stage and the beginnings of our life maps. Turns out, it is much more difficult than I imagined to map out a life and mine has been living for much longer than my students!
I took them through my own process yesterday and then turned them loose with theirs. We’d all been making “little” lists:
places we’ve been from birth to now, people we’ve known from birth to now, challenges we’ve faced from birth to now, and milestones we’ve reached from birth to now.
I had pages of lists, and trying to map all of that was daunting. I had a legal size piece of paper and I used “stones in the river” and in the stones I wrote the names of some of the places I’ve lived. I added some detail by the stones about people and place and happenings. I showed this to my students and they groaned, “You want us to do that? Ms. G, it’ll take for-e-ver to write all that.” They were right, but I’d already figured that out and, with their help, I chose one stone and then we went through the stages of the hero’s journey we’d been working with in class and I did my own pre-writing for them, jotting notes in each stage so I could produce my “slice of my” life map.
Now is one of the fun parts, because I can pretend like I’m an artist and use colored markers to invent symbols to represent each stage of this journey and then add my descriptors so I will be ready to write the narrative. I’ll get some photos of these two maps and post them later this week.
Of course, I’m still adding to my narrative each and every day. Now that the new heifers are out, we spend time each evening going around to each pasture to check on them, but mostly to spend time together and getting these new little mammas used to us. They are already beginning to recognize the sound of cotton candy pellets rattling about in the bucket. Indian and Oreo won’t be left out either- they wait expectantly for me to walk over and give them each a cotton pellet.