Monday, December 31, 2007

New Years Resolution

So my New Year's Resolution this year is to show caring. A couple of blog entries ago I discussed kids and violence and how I had wanted to make some difference.

I have decided to write a letter home to a different student of mine each week during the school year letting them know I care about them and I recognize their efforts. This resolution has evolved from a personal letter handed to the kid in school to sending it home so the parents can see (and maybe freak out because typically they only get negative stuff sent home) and I will also put a copy in their personal file at school. Again, possibly the only positive thing in their file.

When I look at my students, especially those in gangs or getting into trouble, I feel that they want attention. (At that point, negative or positive). My goal is to focus on the at-risk students. At this point of year, students that were successful in the beginning might start to fall behind, or get involved with the wrong kids. I need to let them know that focusing on school is the right track.

My inspiration for this resolution was my student that talked about previously. He's going to jail for 5 years-3 days from now. The last day of school before break he touched me in a way I never thought possible. He was suspended for a couple of days, and missed the mini-Christmas project we were doing. I told him he could have paper and draw whatever. He told me that drawing is getting him through his life right now. I had encouraged him previously to draw anytime he's feeling down or needs to let frustration out. He told me he got a notebook for his drawings after I told him that. His friend looked at his drawings and was impressed with his talent. I told him he's only going to get better as long as he practices. He thanked me for showing him that he's good at something and that he will continue to draw while locked-up. He ended with saying "I hope I get to see you again."
Here is the drawing he made in class that day, and I asked him if I could keep it. He signed it and gave it to me.
He explained to me the viewpoint represented his hope that God was looking down upon him. The door in the back represents his going leaving courtroom to go to jail, but knowing he will enter those doors when he's freed.
How powerful. This was a precious gift that has changed my life.
Happy New Year.

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Thanks for a great birthday!

The ones that made it to the end!
Flight attendants don't play they?
Handsome Temp that put this together!
Crazy Kickers!

Richie looks frustrated!

Saturday, December 22, 2007

yankee swap brings fortune!

$10 limit yankee swap+$16 winning lottery ticket=the elliotts came up!

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Saturday, December 15, 2007

the elliott gingerbread house

gingerbread house party creation

Thursday, December 13, 2007

legs a'danglin'

hanging out at lafeyette river

Saturday, December 08, 2007

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

I'm proud of them...

We did still lifes in chalk pastels....
and the others are where we used elmer's glue and made a random design. 24 hours later, the kids practiced techniques with chalk pastels to prepare them for coloring their still lifes.
sorry for the crooked pics!