Celebrity of the Week

Okay, I admit it.  When I first heard about Celebrity of the Week in my son’s class I thought, ho hum.  By second grade, kids are over that stuff aren’t they?  But no, my second grader,  has waited all year for the honor.  I guess I wasn’t really listening when his teacher, Lori Talbot explained the ritual.  (And I was probably half-thinking, how does this fit in with best practices?)

Now it’s here and…well, wow.

Each day is something special for the Celeb.  Monday he’ll share a poster he created that tells about him.  Tuesday he’ll share his favorite book.  And today, as Lori says, “Wednesday, is the day Mom and Dad get to brag all about him and what makes him his wonderful self.”

Here’s the letter my husband wrote to our little guy.

Dear Ari,

Your name means Lion.  You have the strength, grace and confidence of a lion.  When you make up your mind to do something you don’t let anything get in your way.  You’re lightning fast too!  No one is going to throw you out when you play baseball.  

Ari, you care about everyone and everything.  You feel everyone’s feelings and try to make others feel better.   And you’re the best hugger!  And back scratcher!  Not too hard, not too light…just right!

You’re already a published writer!  You’ve written many picture books and even sold them every year at your summer book stand.  If your readers are lucky, you might even autograph a book!

You’re a master builder.  Legos, Hero Factory, pillow forts.  And as for finding your way out of mazes, well let’s just say that “You’re the man!”

If anybody needs to be cheered up?  You’ll make up a joke.  Or a game.  Your funny ideas will have everybody rolling on the floor laughing. 

If Star Wars was real, you would be a Jedi Knight in training.  And then probably Luke Skywalker’s Padawan!  You have the goodness of all the Jedi Knights combined.  You can probably even use ‘The Force’ to open doors.  

Ari, we have never met anyone who did not fall in love with you the first time they met you.  You’re the best thing that ever happened to us and we love you more than anything.  

Love, Mommy and Daddy

If Ari can read that aloud without tears, I’ll be surprised.  (I couldn’t.)

Thursday–he’s really looking forward to Thursday.  He gets to have lunch with Mrs. Talbot.

And Friday, he’ll receive his fan letters from the rest of the kids.

Did I say ho hum?  I take that back.  Anyone who showers this much love on her students is anything but.  As one principal said to me recently, “You can’t measure heart.” But you can feel it, and it’s alive and well in Lori Talbot’s second grade class.

Friendship Squeeze

My favorite part of today was, at the end of writing time, when a second grader asked me, “Can we do the Friendship Squeeze?”  We all joined hands, then one person sent a squeeze to the person sitting next to her, then she sent it to the next person, until the energy of friendship had been passed around the circle.

I wonder what would happen if we could, each and everyone of us, circle the globe and do the friendship squeeze?

A Joke a Day

Kids are full of all kinds of jokes!  Why not start the day with a joke?  Cindy Piano, 3rd grade teacher in Bogota, New Jersey tells me, “Every morning we stop and take a long cleansing breath after we leave the line-up area.  Then, whoever has a joke, steps to the front of the line to start our morning on a good note.  We have even gotten the 2nd and 4th grades to join us some mornings.  After leaving the noisy gym or maybe having had a rough morning at home, it is nice to breathe and start fresh.”

This joke was overhead in reading workshop (not Cindy’s, though she might want to steal it…)

Text to self connection is when a book reminds me of myself.

Text to text connection is when a book reminds me of another book.

Text to toilet connection is when I bring a book to the bathroom.

At least we know they’re reading!!!