Editors Note: Today's KATE Update is written by Samantha Jessup
Going into the KATE (Kansas Association of Teachers of English) conference this year, I was filled with both trepidation and curiosity. How could I, a student, ever hope to make a place for myself among this community of passionate, progressive teachers? I was very uneasy, expecting the conference to compose itself of hundreds of people from all over the state, few of which I would know, and even fewer who would know me. Yet, fellow classmates of mine were presenting at the conference and were just as nervous and inexperienced as I.
Arriving at the conference changed everything. When I realized that the conference attendees numbered only in the dozens, possibly around one hundred people, I was shocked. It was inconceivable to me that so few teachers in Kansas were at the forefront of this professional communicability, and that so few English teachers either chose not to participate in this event, or were left unaware. This made the impact of the KATE conference for me, that much more important and meaningful. I was taking part in a select group of teachers concerned with their profession and eager to discuss the modern issues and discoveries of teaching.
Bill Konigsberg was extremely humble and kind in his keynote address, which started us off. His message and gentile manner in which he presented it, really carried such an inviting warmth. I was honored to have had the chance to speak with him later, and to attend his session later on publishing YA literature, a great passion of mine. He was definitely a great part of personal growth and professional development for me, both as a writer and a teacher.
Attending the different sessions, on a bibliography of YA Lit, Graphic Novels, and how to use YA texts to advocate for anti-bullying, were interesting and educational experiences. It was wonderful to share my passion for teaching using graphic novels, especially since there were so many teachers interested in the session presented by my classmate. There was vital discussion and relevant applications among all of us.
Now I look forward to implementing some of the strategies I have learned about using graphic novels in my classroom, and creating some of my own. I can't wait until next year so that I can share what I have discovered about teaching graphic novels and strategies other teachers can use.
Most importantly though, I look forward to being an active member of the KATE conference and continuing in my professional development, growing and discussing important issues of the the education profession and the pivotal issues of teaching English.
The Pre-Service Perspective Series Continues with a post by Jentry McDaniel, previewing a topic that will be tackled at the KATE Annual Conference, which starts this week.
As a pre-service teacher, something I have been grappling with is how to create an inclusive environment for my students. Over the past year I have been working more on awareness of differences (ability, race, gender identity, sexual orientation, socioeconomic status, etc.) and checking my privileges along the way.This growing awareness has made me particularly mindful of how my assumptions about students and their experiences inside and outside of the classroom are shaping them, especially socially and emotionally. I know that education and experience are the most influential components of growth, but how do we tackle those experiences that teach us with grace rather than indignation?
A few weeks ago I had an interaction with a student that keeps replaying in my head. She had been late or absent from class just about every day since the semester started, and this particular morning she walked in pretty flustered. Because we were already twenty minutes into instruction, I quietly approached her and began explaining what her classmates were doing and attempted to provide her with an example to get started. She sighed loudly and rolled her eyes, but I continued talking, trying to ignore her growing frustration. Once I stopped talking, she informed me that she wasn’t going to complete the assignment because she didn’t complete the reading. When I suggested better time management outside of class, she told me she was a parent and found it extremely difficult to allot time for reading. Before this conversation I was unaware that she had a child, which is why I assumed that she may have had time outside of school to complete school work. In that instance, I alienated this student by making her feel like she wasn’t doing the best she could with what she had. She eventually transferred out of the class (which is not a result of our conversation) but when I ran into her in the hallway last week I made sure to apologize for making her feel attacked our last morning together and asked her about how things were going at home. Everything seemed forgiven afterwards, but thinking back on myself at that age, I can only imagine that this student, as well as many others, probably still carries that assumption in her subconscious; more baggage. The things we say to students and the way we make them feel while under our authority has the power weigh them down, just as the things outside of school that we don't know about do. Instead of adding to that baggage that is isolation, non-affirmation, and inferiority, what can we do to help our students take a load off?
The Gay, Lesbian & Straight Education Network (GLSEN) offers some seemingly effective practices for fostering an inclusive environment. Their research and resources obviously have LGBTQ+ students in mind, but much of their message can be applied to other populations of students that I listed at the beginning of the post. Some of the ideas GLSEN presents are:
Editor's Note: Today's Pre-Service Perspective piece was written by Taylor Ewy
It didn’t take too long for the dreaded defensive phrase to be used by a student at my placement. While my mentor teacher shared with the class how to organize their 3½ inch binders for all their classes (Wow, those binders arehuge!) I saw a student begin to work ahead and, unfortunately, was not organizing his binder correctly. I went over and asked him to be sure to watch my mentor teacher carefully, and then I heard it: “But I wasn’t even taaalkinggah.”
Now you may think “taaalkinggah” is not a real word, but it is, trust me. I refrained from replying with, “I didn’t even say you were taaalkinggah!” and instead I frowned, saying with some exasperation, “I didn’t say you were talking,” (Better, right?). It didn’t work. I had engaged in a power struggle where neither of us left with the amount of face we needed in the first week of school.
It’s a basic rule of classroom management I learned in my Sprick text in Core I a year ago – do not engage in a power struggle with a student. How can we avoid these? Robert McNeely, in his article “Avoiding Power Struggles with Students” for the National Education Association, shares some excellent points that I need to remind myself over and over again. These include:
From his larger list of do’s and don’t with power struggles, these two are where I struggled in this instance and I see myself having issues with in my future. These two struggles come from my weakness (or perhaps misguided strength for a more positive outlook) of controlling a room more than I should. For example, I know from being the oldest child in my large family and working with many young children that my number one pet peeve is when someone uses a tone of voice I might perceive as having some whine to it. It makes me cringe and react too quickly without the kindness the student deserves as I quickly try to end the whine. When the student reacted to my redirection with a whine and some defensiveness, I did not initially react in a way that allowed him to save face as I tried to gain control for myself, not for him. Ultimately, I was looking to have the last word and let him know I was in control.
McNeely quotes Christopher Perillo under this section of advice in his article sharing Perillo’s brutal honesty on the topic:
“Teachers who insist on having the last word are bringing themselves down to a juvenile level. Students will remember this and that teacher’s value will be diminished” (McNeely).
To say the least, I need to find a better method for working with students who are not reacting how I hoped instead of engaging in the power struggle. My question moving forward is how can I provide an out for students so they can save face, but still get my point taken seriously? Also, how can I practice controlling a classroom for my students rather than for my own needs?
Luckily, the student and I were back on good terms not even five minutes after. I was sure to drop by his desk to compliment his organized binder. Though he was upset when I initially asked him to redirect his attention to my mentor teacher, after I got my last word in (shame) and left him alone, he returned his attention to where it needed to be and was successful in the assignment. It seems students are forgiving if you’re honest and kind, but how many times can a student forgive me if I keep engaging in power struggles where no one wins? Onto week three, that much wiser.
x Mrs. Ewy
McNeely, Robert. “Avoiding Power Struggles with Students.” NEA, 2015. Web. 05 Sept. 2016.
Editor's Note: Today's Pre-Service Perspective piece was written by Taylor Ewy
“Please tuck in your shirt,” I whispered low with a smile so only the student would hear. I assumed I was doing her a favor, saving her from having to be stopped by another teacher or possibly even sent to the office. I remember in my Catholic high school tucking my white oxford straight into the pleated green and blue plaid without any blousing to avoid the dreaded veteran P.E. teacher at the end of the lunch line. He was always ready with the “pink slips”, which were basically demerit slips on speed dial. Every teacher had them, but this teacher gave them out so readily that they were pre-signed with a stamp of his signature. When you got a pink slip from this teacher, the whole hallway knew it. His voice carried and he was about making sure everyone knew it was happening. Humiliating. An unforgettable experience. It happened to me twice my entire high school career and both times my skin was inflamed with embarrassment for the next hour, my makeup basically melted off from the heat in my face. I didn’t want that for this girl, though I’m sure there’s no one like the old P.E. teacher where I am now. So I bent down to her level to whisper while the teacher was instructing, “Please tuck in your shirt.”
“I’m not allowed to,” she whispered quickly, shifting her eyes. “What?” I said a slightly louder, seriously confused. “I’m not allowed to!” she whispered urgently, her eyes wide. This was obviously embarrassing her, so I nodded knowingly and walked away. I couldn’t figure it out, but later, after confirming it with my mentor teacher, I learned she was not allowed to tuck in her long sleeve shirt for religious reasons. I felt like I just became the old P.E. teacher because though I was whispering, her eyes looked at me like I was shouting.
The next day I walked over to another student who was sitting during the Pledge of Allegiance. “Next time, let’s be sure to stand up all together,” I whispered, again with a smile. “I’m not allowed to,” he whispered back. I must have let a quizzical look slide because he quickly followed with, “My family is Jehovah Witness.” “Ah,” I said as I walked away. Second day in a row, assuming and losing.
Third day! I’m prepared to be unassuming. One student starts joking about Justin Bieber, referencing rumors that a few others chimed in hearing about. “Let’s focus on our article,” I offered, but the conversation picked back up again less than a minute later. “Does it really matter? It is none of your business. Let’s enjoy his music” (one of his new songs was playing softly in the background). “It matters,” said one student, “because it’s against Jesus.” I am just about offending everyone this week.
My K-12 education was Roman Catholic, being in one building for K-8 and then meeting my 250 graduating class for high school in the same school my parents went to. I was taught by several sweet sisters (different than nuns, by the way) and knew that what I believed everyone else in the room also believed, or at least was taught to. I could make assumptions about my classmates. For many reasons, I am not able to make nearly that many assumptions with my students this year.
Religious diversity has been the first hiccup of my Core III experience. Though the situations I shared weren't that bad, I knew I had personally made an assumption that everyone was the same and was caught off guard when it wasn’t the case. I think I handled each situation well, but not being prepared for these moments was a slight failure on my part. My next step is to walk into the classroom without too many assumptions about my students beyond they all can learn and what I am sure of because of records. If I make the wrong assumption about a student, I hope that I won’t let on that I am surprised or confused so I don’t embarrass them. I had to go look up after class about why Jehovah Witness believers do not stand for the Pledge - I wish I had known that earlier so the student didn’t see that brief look of confusion on my face.
As this week comes to an end, I look forward to growing more in my relationships with the various students as I get to know more about them. I’m prepared for many more hiccups, but I’m also prepared to keep moving forward with what resources and knowledge I have available.
Keep up the good work, my friends!
x Mrs. Ewy
Editor's Note: The "Pre-Service Perspective" series continues with this post from Caitlin Doolittle
"Many students don’t see education as a privilege. They see it as a product. And if they don’t like the salesperson, if they aren’t impressed with how it’s packaged, they aren’t buying. But our kids have to learn to be self-motivated because at some point in every person’s life, either at school or in a job or in a marriage, he or she will have to buck up and say, 'This is hard. This is boring. I don’t want to do this. But I’m doing it anyway. And I’ll do my best.'" -Laura Hanby, "How to fix the apathy problem in schools", The News & Observer, June 5, 2016
We've made it through two weeks already, the students and I. Now we're all getting to enjoy a much deserved (or at least we think so) 3 day weekend. The biggest thing I have struggled with this school year so far is being present, and I think a few students have been having the same problem. The class I work with is first thing in the morning, and we're all tired. I'm able to become engaged very quickly, though, having years of customer service under my belt, therefore the training to put on a brave and cheerful face even when I'm exhausted. My worry is, though, if we allow these student to be taciturn, and write it off as just them being tired, will it change throughout the year... or are we just communicating the wrong expectations? We all want to work in a classroom in which the students are engaged and excited about their learning. So, it's our jobs to make lessons that are exciting, diverse, effective, innovative, informative.... the list of adjectives goes on and on. But should this weight really just be on our shoulders? I of course do not have the answers to this yet, but now is a good time to start asking that question.
As education majors, we are taught many ways to shape and change our lessons so that they are accessible to each students' learning style. This is valuable information, as it is of course true that we all learn differently, and what we are taught as education majors has to do with communicating that learning to each kind of student. But just because we know how to teach, does not mean that our students know how to learn. So it does seem like some of the weight of the classroom experience is on the students' shoulders. This just means that we cannot do all of the work for them. That if something isn't getting through to a student, they may need to come up with a new approach, a new way of looking at the problem, or to seek out new resources... just like we have to as teachers. But it seems like less and less does society hold students to these standards. When a student is having trouble, it can be an easy out to just blame a teacher and say they are ineffective.
But to get back to the main point: sometimes it's hard to get students engaged, especially when it's first thing in the morning, on top of being the beginning of the year, when not every one knows each other yet (or you for that matter). As I start to design lessons and make my own efforts to get students fired up, I should use this time to advocate some good learning habits to the students. Right now I'm a bit of a bystander in the classroom, which, as I see it, is the perfect position in which to be that voice in the students' ear that guides them to be more and more independently motivated. I can give encouragements from those sidelines as the teacher is in front of the class doling out that useful learning.
A great article by Laura Hanby called "How to fix the apathy problem in schools" is what initially got me excited about this idea. She talks about how to start small when it comes to encouraging students to become more motivated in their classes. It's ok to start by only giving 100% in one class and by doing this through good note taking methods, organization, or by finding study buddies. These are all things we can easily guide students into doing. Then through these efforts, students may start having success in classes that they otherwise found boring or too hard. "Success breeds success, and success is an excellent motivator."
I highly recommend checking out her article here, it's a very good read.
As the year continues to go by, I'm going to make more of an effort to try self-motivation techniques with students, and promote these ideas as a regular topic of conversation. Then, hopefully, by the end of the year no one will have to be putting on any brave faces. I will report back here both successes and failures!
"Not only does success motivate, but it can also inspire, and here is where we move from sheer determination to passion – the true goal of education." -Laura Hanby, "How to fix the apathy problem in schools",The News & Observer, June 5, 2016
Anticipation, trepidation, and outright terror. Those were some of the mindsets that I had while preparing to become a teacher. There was also, enthusiasm, optimism, and passion. All of those initial emotions, and a plethora of additional ones have stuck with me in some measure (some more than others) as I've continued my career.
When I was a pre-service teacher I had a ton of conflicting emotions. I was equal parts eager and anxious to actually get into a classroom to see if I'd actually be able to stand in front of a group of 25 to 30 students and try to make them learn something. I was proud of the career, lifestyle, and even professional path that I'd set myself upon, but I felt intimidated by "real" teachers who had their own classrooms, and I also felt like because I hadn't done it yet that I shouldn't feel too proud. I remember my intense desire for content and pedagogy knowledge, while despairing about what I didn't yet know.
But then, you're a student teacher in a classroom and you're petrified, but you stand in front of 28 15-year-olds anyway. You ask them a question, and it's silent. SILENT. We are talking church, grave, pin-drop quiet Those few seconds of wait time (of which you should give them at least 7) seems like an eternity; more than enough time to ponder whether or not you've made the right decision for your career and life in general. But before you can seriously contemplate putting in an application to Truckmasters Truck Driving Academy or enlisting in the Army, students raise their hands and answer your question. After that you feel like you can do it. You mess things up. You learn. You get better. You get confident. You really mess something up. You learn more. You finish the semester. You graduate. You get a real job. You get your own classroom. And that's where the real learning begins.
The beginning of the year is an exciting time. New students. New teachers. New problems, New opportunities. New perspectives. In the interest of perspective, it's important, from time to time, to look back and reflect how far we've come. It's just as important is to look towards the future as well.
So, at the beginning of the year, we will take a look at the thoughts of people who are at the beginning of their careers. For some of us, it will be a look towards the past, while for others it will be a look towards the future. I'm calling it "The Pre-Service Perspective." For the next week we will get that perspective from people who probably have many of those same thoughts and emotions swirling around as they embark upon their own exciting, terrifying, and exhilarating journeys in our profession.
Editor's Note - Today's Blog is by guest author Mary Harrison
As I’ve gotten older, I’ve increasingly become a morning person. I have learned to enjoy waking up at 5:00 AM and leisurely getting ready for work. I find that my mind is clear and sharp in the mornings, and that I’m all the more prepared for a day of teaching if I find a way to exercise my brain before leaving the house. This is how I became addicted to podcasts.
When I empty the dishwasher, feed the pets, and put on makeup at the crack of dawn, I’m learning – learning through listening. Sometimes I’m discovering how the movements of the economy affect seemingly unrelated social phenomena (Freakonomics). Sometimes I’m learning about the stories behind those punchy and sensationalized political headlines (The Diane Rehm Show). Sometimes I’m learning more about how to live a healthy lifestyle (Zorba Paster). Sometimes I’m discovering a new short story author that completely grips me with their story and style (The New Yorker Fiction podcast and Selected Shorts). No matter where these podcasts take me, I’m always left wondering, “How can I incorporate this in my classroom?”
In the Language Arts classroom, we devote ourselves to teaching reading, writing, speaking, and listening. I fear, however, that many, including myself, fall short of actually intentionally instructing students in the ways of active listening: it generally seems to simply be an expectation. Often, teachers lead a shared reading and count the activity as listening instruction, but it’s not; in a shared reading, students have the text in front of them, and can rely on their eyes. Active listening becomes the expectation when students are held accountable for what they hear.
In her article “The Value of Sharing Stories Orally with Middle Grade Students”, Hollee A. Frick speaks to the value of read-alouds for older students. Though she published her ideas and researched support in 1986, her arguments still hold water, and the implementation of her proposed strategies can certainly be augmented with modern technology, such as podcasts. She asserts that “The first and most obvious skills nurtured by storytelling and oral reading are those involving listening” and adds that “Refinement of this skill can be effectively used later when students must listen for directions or participate in discussions” (301). Here, Frick makes an important connection: not only should students engage in active listening during read-alouds, but should be given opportunities to draw connections between those experiences and meaningful applications. I have witnessed very juvenile class discussions among very intelligent students, and couldn’t help but wonder if they had ever been deliberately taught to listen carefully to others and then respond in context. So how could I use a podcast to this end?
This type of instruction would look slightly different with different types of podcasts, and I do think a variety should be introduced to students. I could provide students with guided notes to complete as they listen intently, pausing the audio at certain points to give them time to digest and react; this type of activity would particularly lend itself to informational or argumentative selections. Their notes could serve as a springboard for discussion about the topic at hand, in which they can directly apply the skill of listening closely and responding appropriately to live conversation with their peers.
Regarding fiction and storytelling, Frick cites a survey in which “101 high school students most often mentioned the activity of being read aloud to as one which initiated positive attitudes toward reading” (300). The Selected Shorts podcast would be a wonderful classroom tool for inspiring a love of reading, as it features professional—and famous—actors expressively reading exceptional short stories to a live audience. Aside from proving the entertainment value of stories, the lesson could move into a writing exercise that holds students accountable for what they’ve heard. I would challenge students to notice the structure, style, or mood of the story and to create their own piece of short fiction that emulates the one they listened to. I could also ask students to compile a class list of other stories that they’ve read independently that share traits with the story we’ve enjoyed together as a class.
As teachers, we must constantly be on the lookout for new methods that engage our students in important literacies with many types of text. While textbooks and traditional approaches to Language Arts instruction still have a place in my classroom, I am excited about the prospect of building a classroom culture that embraces technology, thereby embracing my students’ interests. As students shuffle through the hallway with their earbuds attached, I can only hope that at least one of them is listening to This American Life and thinking, “Man, what a great story.”
Frick, Hollee A. "The Value of Sharing Stories Orally with Middle Grade Students." Journal of Reading
Editor's Note: Today's KATE UPDATE post is from Mary Harrison
The last couple of weeks have been a whirlwind of conflicting emotions, particularly of eager anticipation and of bowel-liquefying anxiety. Too much information? Let’s see, where’s my thesaurus…How about of eager anticipation and of knee-knocking dread? You get the idea. As I prepared for my very first KATE Conference, I couldn’t wait to see the keynote speakers. I was excited to hear famous storyteller Laura Packer, and I collected a stack of Jaqueline Woodson novels to bring for the signing. But even more so, I couldn’t wait to spend two days among my people: English teachers. I couldn’t wait to attend their breakout sessions and hear about their tried and true practices. I couldn’t wait to grill them between sessions for more information. I couldn’t wait for them to pump me up with inspiration and motivation. So why the fear?
I too would be presenting at this conference. That’s right; little old preservice teacher ME would be standing in front of these seasoned teachers, trying to tell THEM what I believe is important to classroom instruction. As the conference approached, I felt more and more inadequate and became more and more intimidated by the prospect. Unlike me, these weren’t just realteachers, but they were the cream of the crop. These were not the teachers who roll their eyes all through inservices and go to the teacher lounges to complain about students and colleagues. These were the teachers who voluntarily paid to attend a professional development conference. These were teachers who truly love learning. What in the world could I possibly teach them, though? I felt like such a farce.
As I nervously prepared the room for my presentation, participants filed in. Hands shaking, heart racing, I stumbled around the room giving out handouts and willing my breakfast to stay inside of me. Before I knew it, the room was packed and I was out of handouts. “Well, I wrote a catchy sounding title for my presentation, and that’s why they’ve come. Let’s see how much I disappoint them” I thought to myself. Just before I began, I took inventory. I saw several of my classmates, and felt some relief. I also saw a teacher that I’d recently met at Watermark, and she flashed a warm smile at me. I felt more relief. I took a deep breath and began.
I am happy to report that I not only survived my presentation, but also that the real teachers seemed interested in and receptive to my materials. As the next two days unfolded, I was struck by what seemed to be their mantra when speaking to me and my classmates: “YOU ARE real teachers!” There wasn’t anything patronizing or disingenuous in their tone, either. They actually regarded us as professionals and they visibly enjoyed learning from us as much as they loved giving us advice. In the end, I feel like this trait of humility may be a defining characteristic for effective teachers. These people truly model learning as an exchange. These people do not insist that they have all the answers. These people know that being a teacher means being a student.
At the end of the second day, Laura Packer emceed a storytelling session in which several teachers regaled the crowd with their stories. These stories overflowed with the bittersweet triumphs of teaching and of life in general. My eyes welled up and a steady stream of tears marked my cheeks as these women bravely stood in front of us, vulnerable and exposed. I cried for their losses. I cried for their victories. I cried for my own relief. Most of all, however, I cried because I felt so overwhelmingly validated in my career choice. Without reservation, I can now say it: I am a teacher.
Re-blogged with kind permission of the author from: http://msmaryharrison.blogspot.com/2015/10/catharsis-and-validation-at-kate.html
[Editor's Note: We will be featuring the thoughts of the 2015 KATE Conference attendees. This one comes from Keely Tolbert]
The KATE conference was unlike anything I could have anticipated. There was the inherent awkwardness of feeling like the new kid on the block as a pre-service student teacher among those who are far more experienced in the classroom. Then there was the sheer audacity of leading a break-out session at this point in my career that seemed almost laughable to me and terrifying as the minutes ticked ever closer to the conference.
Thankfully, the conference was nothing like I imagined. There was no judgement - there was acceptance, support and a tremendous sharing of ideas and comradery. There was conversation, nodding of heads and this great give and take as we all participated as educators with a shared passion for our job and our students. During my own session, I heard several wonderful ideas from other teachers who had incorporated art into their curriculum with great success (filed those away for future use of course).
My favorite session taught by two first year teachers who I had the good fortune to meet during their final year at WSU who talked to us about using music in the ELA classroom – such great energy during that session and so many wonderful ideas from the presenters and the other teachers present that the hour flew by and I honestly wished we had had more time to collaborate as a group.
One thing that would be so fantastic, would be if KATE would set-up a wiki where all the presenters could post their notes and/or PowerPoints after the conference so that all of us could benefit from all the great information presented especially if we had a hard time choosing between sessions. I feel like there was so much I gained, but also this sense of missing out on a lot too – it says a lot when you sit down with a conference guide and have such a hard time deciding what to go see because they all sound so good!
Getting the chance to hear Jacqueline Woodson was definitely a highlight. She is so down to earth and her reading voice is almost heart breaking it is so lovely. I appreciated the chance to have a couple seconds of conversation with her during the book signing and I know I will find a way to incorporate her writing into my curriculum at some point.
There are few words for getting the chance to work with Laura Packer on storytelling. I will admit that I almost lamented my decision to tell a story on Friday until my final session with Laura. She is truly gifted in her art and I will be forever grateful that I took the leap and told a story. Honestly, it was harder than my session presentation, but it was incredibly empowering to spend those 5 minutes addressing the group on Friday. I plan to find a way to bring storytelling into my classroom, if nothing else to encourage a sense of safe community for my students – where they can share with one another and feel confident enough to do so.
Beyond the amazing ideas and the chance to meet and talk to dynamic teachers who inspire with their love for their craft and their willingness to embrace and encourage those of us at the start of our journey, I also had this tremendous sense of comradery among my WSU peers. Here we are in our final year together – running toward the light at the end of our time at WSU and our goal to be teachers – and we have so much to offer one another as burgeoning professionals, classmates, peers and friends. Being able to spend time outside of the classroom, away from our placements and sharing in the experience at KATE was a great opportunity to explore similar interests, share ideas and move beyond our teacher/student lives to really take time to talk and listen to each other.
I am incredibly thankful for my experience at KATE and the opportunities I took to push beyond my comfort zone in so many ways both professional and personal. I cannot wait to see what next year’s KATE might bring!
This post by Keely Tolbert is re-blogged, with kind permission, from http://labcoatsandbookjackets.blogspot.com/