As Red Ribbon Week at RBES comes to a close, I can't help but smile as I reflect on this past week. Our children are growing up in a nation with a drug problem. However, our community came together this week to help encourage our children to just say no.
Parents got up extra early and spent money and time to get their kids ready for each theme day this week. They took time to talk to their kids and answer their questions about drugs, addiction, and peer pressure.
Teachers and staff members did the same with their own kids, then came to school and helped students who needed it. Our staff this year couldn't have been more supportive as they did activities and gave group talks in their classrooms that supported this week. They let me interrupt their plans for guest speakers and Drug Free plays. But most importantly, they supported our kids, our community, and the movement to live in a Drug Free world.
Finally, our students. All I can say is, Wow! They were so supportive of this week. They dressed up, they put on plays, they participated in classroom lessons. They care so deeply about our community and to break the chains of addiction.
Every year, I have students tell me heartbreaking stories of how the addictions of loved ones has affected their lives. Kids pledge to never do drugs and to help their friends make positive choices. My hope is that one year, these stories will cease and that our kids will reap the benefits of community will truly be unaffected by the evils of Drugs and Addiction.
Tuesday we were able to share some time together with some exotic guests. Wild animals! Well, technically not wild, they were quite tame. The kangaroo actually wore diapers! Pampers, size 5, I checked. Unfortunately, the blue-tongued skink did not. I found this out the hard way.
The presentation was for grades pK-3rd grade courtesy of the Barn Hill Animal preserve from Louisiana. If you would like to read more about them follow the link here.
The kids loved seeing the new animals in our building. Don't get me wrong, I did too, but what I loved more was watching the kids' faces when the presenter would bring another animal out, their eyes filling with wonder. They were so enthralled with each new creature.
As I watched them, I thought about how now, from something as little as this 45 minute presentation, when they read about a kangaroo in a book, they will know what one looks like, how one moves, some know how it's fur is soft like deer's skin. Moments like these are forever engraved in a child's mind, offering so much more than a video clip or a iPad game could ever do. All because these real-life opportunities offer "wonder."
Everyday we get to watch your kiddos grow and change before our very eyes with each new new experience. Sometimes we can get so wrapped up in learning that we forget that the best learning opportunities come from "wonder." Thank you all for sharing your children with us each school day and giving us these opportunities to learn from them.
This is a work in progress. I am excited about starting this website as a way to help parents and students. I will no longer continue updating my old blog.
Christy M. English, Ed.S