My brother reminded me of the fact that many schools have a pajama day. I suppose that was to give the children a well-intentioned opportunity to be “comfy” at school. However, as we talked, I realized that many children do not have pajamas. They either sleep in their underwear or simply their daytime clothes. Other children do not have shoes without holes, or socks or a swimsuit to wear if their school district has swimming instructions. For many children and their parents back to school is a yearly tradition where they descend upon the stores to get new shoes, socks, clothes and school supplies all with the latest labels and styles. But what about the kids whose families lack the resources to get these necessities? Many of them stick out like a sore thumb. They don’t want to be different. No kid wants to be different. Last year I taught a Junior Achievement class where one little boy had simply “checked out”. His clothes were old and faded, so he was present physically, but not mentally or emotionally. I remember I brought a cereal box to class that I had decorated to make a savings bank. After class he sidled up to me and quietly whispered, “I like boxes.” I was so dumbfounded that I gave him the box. I hope that it didn’t cause problems with his classmates. I was just so touched that he approached me and asked for something.
Plus, as a teacher, how do you reach a student whose life is “less than”? No one wants to be different, particularly kids. It is an unfortunate truth that kids can be cruel, and their words can hurt. I don’t think that they particularly realize the impact their words can have. I have addressed How to help some of these kids in some previous posts: “The early bird gets the school supplies” (7/16/18), and Everyday Helps (9/4/18).
DonorsChoose (Donors Choose.org) is a wonderful resource where teachers can post their needs, and you can give any amount to the product of your choice. By everyone pitching together to help out, we can make a positive impact for the teachers and the children.
I wish you peace, true peace.
“World peace begins with inner peace.” Dalai Lama