It's sunny. It's a perfect summer day - not too hot and warm enough to swim. We load the car with two legged humans and our four legged friend. Honestly, the dog park that's free with water access seems a bit of a drive and I tag along because they all like going. I get there and do some self talking. I'm a bit spoiled when it comes to water spots. I grew up on a Finger Lake in Upstate New York. I love pebbled lake fronts and love the sand at the ocean. Today the sand seems gritty and dragged in replicate something much nicer. There's wet four legged friends chasing each other around and I flinch each time they pass hoping to not get sprayed with that wet dog shake.
My husband and girls are all in. They find a stick and start throwing it and Winniee leaps through the air landing in the water with complete joy. A younger couple drift our way with a black lab puppy and we learn it's his first time at the water. He's probably between six months and year old. He watches Winniee come back and forth; in and out of the water. He begins to wade in and darts back out; still keeping an eye on Winniee. Maybe fifteen minutes in to our time together he takes the plunge and follows her out to her stick. He's swimming!
I start reflecting on the gradual release model and find myself questioning modeling. I modeled projects in the classroom when I was younger that became direct replicas when my students tried the independent piece. I'm often cautious about modeling something completely, if it's a physical product. I find discussions to be different. However, watching two dogs work through the modeling, gradual release model in a way has me pondering and revisiting what is needed for the gradual release model to create independent and success at the end and with ease.
Thank you Two Writing Teachers
for fostering this writing community called A Slice of Life.