Beans lives on a dairy farm with her parents and she is always telling me about the baby calves and their mamma's; the horses; dogs; and the latest--her cat, Furball had kittens. She was so excited about them! I asked her if she was going to bring them into class for show-and-tell, since it will be a while yet before she can, I let her borrow my camera so she could take pictures to show the class.
I love having Beans in my class. One of the things I love about teaching is seeing the progress a student makes--not only in their academics, but also their character and spiritual life. Having taught the same group of students these last two years, I see even more of a difference.
Last year, I remember the day blends finally clicked for Beans. After weeks of frustration we all celebrated in her success and she went from dreading phonics class to asking if it was time to read our blends. This year she absolutely loves to take home her reading books. For example, I wasn't planning on giving the kids any work during springbreak because...well, they needed a break from school! Anyway, the afternoon before our week off, I had my students read to me out of their new books and Beans wanted to take hers home and read it during break. I thought they would all be jumping for joy at the thought of no homework, so I told her that if she remembered to ask me on Sunday for her book, I would give it to her. Sure enough, Sunday after church, Beans came to me asking, "May I have my book?". She is one determined child, but I am so glad that she has a love of learning and reading.
She is that way with all of her classes. Because she can be a perfectionist, Beans sometimes lets her frustration get the best of her and we have been learning about balance. I certainly don't want her to think that it is "bad" to make mistakes.
She has grown so much, and as she graduates this year I hope she will keep pushing herself to do her best. I hope this passion for learning grows and she doesn't become nonchalant in the years ahead.