Sunday, October 20, 2013

Pay It Forward
Of all the things that I would most like to teach my students, it is the idea of how to make a difference in the life of someone else by serving.
I recently heard Abdi's story and his very clearly explains what it eans to "pay it forward".  He came to the US as a Somali refugee at age 17 and after spending a short time in California, he found out that in Minnesota, you can stay in high school until age 21.  He moved here and, athough he knew little to no English when he arrived in the US, he was able to graduate from high school and go on to college at the University of Minnesota.  Homework Help, a program run by the Hennepin County libraries, made a huge difference in his success story because there he found caring volunteer tutors to assist him in his studies.  Now, Abdi pays it forward - he is now in charge of this program and is the one to make sure that others like him find the help they need to continue their studies.
Hennepin County Library Homework Help
What does it mean to you to pay it forward?  For me it means many things:  sending a homemade card to a shut-in; providing a meal to new parents or to my elderly parents; sharing my gift of music on Sunday mornings at my church and so on.
For my students, it begins with smiling and greeting each other in the morning and listening respectfully when others are speaking.  And from that point on, the sky's the limit!

Monday, January 7, 2013

What are you reading?
I always try to encourage my students to read, read, read and I try to be a good model for that.  I share with them the books I am reading, comment on my favorite authors or illustrators and talk about the books that I enjoyed when I was younger.  I am a voracious reader and believe that reading opens windows to our world when we are not able to hop into a car or onto a plane or a train for a fun adventure.
Since it is the season of new resolutions, I have decided to join with some fellow bloggers from my church and try to read the entire Bible in a year.  I have Bible study software from Christmas last year (a gift to myself!) and am looking into daily reading plans.

Here is a link to one that looks pretty good:
Who's in?!  
Let me know with a comment what you are reading 
or if you are planning to read through the Bible in 2013.