Warm Fuzzies

Friday, September 2, 2016

     One of my favorite teachers ever was my 2nd grade teacher.  She used to give us "warm fuzzies," which were cotton balls with a positive statement glued to them.  We would collect them for doing kind things, and earn class prizes.  I'm pretty sure cooking was one of them, even though I'm sure we weren't top chefs back then.  I still remember it.  

     When I graduated college and got a job in 2nd grade classroom of my own, I also made "warm fuzzies" to pass out to my class.  Some lessons last a lifetime, I suppose.

     Now, I'm a literacy coach without a classroom of my own.  I walked into +Kayla Kaczmarek's 1st grade to deliver a book she requested on kindness.  Little did I know that she wanted to read it in their morning meeting to introduce "warm fuzzies" to the current  generation.  This time, they were pom poms of different colors and sizes, with shiny fringe.  But, the lesson remains the same.  She is collecting them in a jar that recognizes kind acts to others. 

     Isn't it great, 30 years later, that I can say that kindness is still the focus in our classrooms?  We teach humans first, always.  The lessons that perhaps will be the most important years later are the ones where we teach our students how to be people who choose to think about how others feel, and choose to act with care and empathy towards others.  

     I still send my 2nd grade teacher Christmas cards, because she made me feel special 31 years ago. Thanks, Mrs. Lambesis, for that lesson.  It mattered.

Also, I'll share this one more time.  Teachers are models that last a lifetime.  #StayHumbleAndKind