Thursday, August 25, 2005

Letters from students

Back in June, the library teacher did a lesson with the fifth graders involving a book called Thank You Mr. Falker by Patricia Polacco. She had the students write letters to people that helped them while they were students at the West School. I received a few letters and got tears in my eyes when I read them. Here are some excerpts from letters written to me by two fifth grade boys:
"I thank you Mrs. Bonomi for all you taught me and all the art things I know. Every time I got home, my mom loved all the art work I made. I always wanted a glue gun but my mom wouldn't get me one, but now my mom and my dad got me one. So now I have one of my own. So I just wanted to thank you for all you have done for me because my parents wouldn't trust me with one but now they do because I use one in your room. I'll miss you when I go to the middle school."

One more letter: "Art was something I could always look forward to. It was always fun. I could always do projects of my choice. I always had all the supplies I needed for a project. You always said that all ideas work great. You were always kind and forgiving. You taught us so much. Thank you for all you have done. I will miss you at the middle school."

I know that if I didn't have a choice-based art program, I would not be getting letters like these from anyone. I just wish I had started earlier because these students had choice for only one year and now they will be moving on to the middle school.
I am going to miss them too.

1 comment:

Jennifer Blair said...

I found your blog through a link on the art_education list. The work you do to provide your students with the freedom to create is wonderful. I was lucky enough to experience choice-based art education when I was in high school in the 80's, which has completely influenced how I teach art now. I am always thanful to hear of others teaching art in this way.