Archive for March 7th, 2023

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Remember Alice? The sleep-deprived child from my Slice on Saturday? She wanted me to let all my readers know that she took my advice and read The Lightning Thief, our current class novel, before falling asleep rather than watching TV. If you’ve ever read The Lightning Thief, you may not think this is such a good book to read before going to sleep. Talk about wild crazy dreams filled with Minotaurs and such. But the book helped Alice fall asleep at a reasonable hour, so she was enthusiastically ready for class today. 

She also wanted me to share her Basquiat art piece. 

I asked my students for an idea for today’s Slice of Life, and they pointed to a painting I created years ago in a creativity class for my gifted certification. That class was one of my favorites. I loved my teacher and the projects we did. I went searching for the binder. More than any other class, this one taught me how to embrace my own creativity so that I could encourage it in my gifted students. This was a reminder I needed today.

I found the binder, my final project, in a cubby and hugged it close. I’m so glad I kept it. Looking through the binder was like looking into a time capsule. So many things I had forgotten. But my painting with my teaching philosophy remains on the wall of my classroom today. I still believe in it and try to live it everyday. 

In the painting, I analogized creativity with opening a door. In my classroom, I want to make the students feel safe as in a birdhouse that gives them the freedom to explore ideas, discover relationships, and ask questions. A cat symbolizes curiosity; the tree, exploring possibilities; and the planet, discovery. The purple mountains symbolize expanding the horizon, and the wildflowers, flexibility.

Margaret Simon, circa 1999

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