Driving to a late day meeting, I unzip my lovely new cooler bag, and fish around for this …
Before I even see it, I imagine peeling it, and think of where I might leave the peelings. In my mind’s eye (or is it nose? lol) I can already smell the beautiful, citrus fragrance. I can’t wait to experience it as it fills my car with lusciousness!
At that moment my mind returned to this fabulous little hand …
This hand belongs to one of my kindergarteners from last year. I loved the exchange we had, so I asked if I could photograph her hand with the peel in it. She looked quizzically at me when I asked, but agreed.
“I love your idea,” I explained, “and I want to write about it on my blog! I never thought of it as a possibility, and I want to share it with others.” She smiled a soft, small smile, and agreed.
Finally, I am sharing.
When she came to me her eyes were bright.
She said “Look, Miss James!”
I looked at her hand, and then back to her face for an explanation.
She responded, “I’m going to use it in our supermarket build!”
(We visit a supermarket, create field guides, and then re-create the market in our classroom with blocks and various other items.)
I reply, “You are? What will you do with it?”
She said, “I’m going to use it to add an orange smell to my paper oranges. You know, like a scratch and sniff!”
I burst out laughing, and with a huge smile say “WOW! That is fantabulous!!! What a great, creative idea! I never thought of that! Thanks for sharing your idea with me!”
Amazing, right? I wondered why she was showing me a clementine peel. It didn’t immediately come to mind that the small piece of peel could be used so creatively.
Often, my students ideas are large, sometimes even bigger than mine. I enjoy their exuberance, and their big ideas. And, I trust that my support, my openness and positivity, and my joy in their awesomeness, encourages them to adopt, trust and live their big ideas!