On Martin Luther King’s birthday my Kindergartners made these portraits in his likeness. I giggle every time I look at them. I love each and every one of them for different reasons; just like I do the artists who created them. Its really funny, but I can see the personalities of each child shining through their creations.
Some decided that Martin Luther King needed long, luscious eyelashes. Others gave him thier idea of a stylish mustache, while still others gave him one or more exaggerated features. I guess I liked this project so much because the students were given only brief instructions of how to create their piece. They were told to give him an oval head–some got pretty close, and others–well, you can see that for yourself. They were shown how to shape his coat, tie, shirt, ears, eyes, and lips. They whined a little because this project took them out of their comfort zone. They wanted a tangible pattern to cut out (not that they follow the lines). There was no definite pattern, only instructions.
I admire my supervising teacher so much. It is mostly because I can tell that she genuinely loves teaching and adores her students. She gives them opportunities to express themselves as individuals and never scolds them for making their project different. She is kind, quiet, and firm all at the same time. Her students know what she expects and they strive to meet those expectations. As I am teaching more and more I am finding that they also want to please me. There have been a couple of times that I have thought, “Am I crazy for wanting to come here everyday?” I can honestly say, “Yes, I am crazy.” I am crazy about those sweet, innocent souls that surround me everyday. I feel so blessed to be able to sit around the carpet with them looking into their smiling faces. Already I am starting to feel the pain of losing them. They will be mine (sort of) for only a short time, but I know that like the precious people I carry with me from my past they will follow me for the rest of my life.