Dear Jasper and Kestrel,
Yesterday I told you about my student, who I called B, and his troubled life and how Tucci Learning Solutions helped him. Today I will tell you about R, another boy in my class.
When I met R in January, I barely noticed him. In a class with quite a few rowdy boys, R sat at his seat in the back row and didn’t do much…he didn’t make trouble, but didn’t write or read much, either. From the front of the room I saw mostly a boy with his head down.
Now, I know I should have noticed sooner, but 26 kids, new curriculum and new rules made for a slow dawning in my brain that R was doing something at his desk. Whenever I got close, he would shove papers into his junk heap of a desk and try to look like he had been working.
So one day after school I pulled out the crumpled mass of papers. Crayons, markers, pencils and shavings, as well as bits of paper and old snacks, came out as well. My first impulse was to wad the mess up and throw it all out. But I flattened them out and looked at the drawings. There were dozens of them, and some very detailed and well done. I put them in a pile and talked to R about them the next day.
“Your drawings get all mashed in your desk,” I said. “Would you like a folder to keep them safe?” He stared at me for a moment, then smiled in relief and chose a few drawings to keep at school in the folder and took the rest home. The next day during my read aloud time, R worked happily on his drawings, not worrying about hiding them.
The next week in art, R made paper cut-outs. This week he has drawn a desert, to help illustrate our spelling word. I suppose he numbered it because he plans on doing more deserts.
When I collected the spelling lists prior to giving the test, I was pleased to see that he was still drawing….he had illustrated his spelling list to help him remember the difference between desert and dessert…
God bless the artists!