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Showing posts from February, 2013

Her Dream

My "Little Sister" wrote this.  She is nine years old, in fourth grade, and has been through far too much already.                                                                  My Dream   Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. had a dream that there would be equality and peace. Dr. King wanted his children not to be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.   I have a dream that when I grow up I can go to college and work very hard so I could get a great job, and live a long, happy and harmless life.   I hope and pray that I won’t get killed or die early.   I have a dream that none of my family will be killed or die unnaturally. I also want my little brothers to grow up and be whatever they want to be.     I have a dream that my community won’t have any more shootings especially people in my family. Specifically, my cousin. At sixteen shot and killed whom I Love so much.    I have a dream that this country will never ag

Me Duele/It Hurts

I tutor a 7-year old English-speaking child who is in a Spanish immersion first grade.  She didn't do Spanish immersion kindergarten so she's a little behind but she's really smart.  However, she doesn't really like to pay attention and is having a hard time sort of buying into her new class, so that's been the challenge. The other day, I was at her house when she came in limping and crying and being very dramatic about her fall from a tree. She wouldn't stop talking about how much it hurt (she forgot to cry when I gave her a sticker so I don't think it hurt all that much) so I told her how to say it in Spanish. This child really really likes singing so she started humming and singing "me duele, it hurts me, me duele it hurts."  Sensing an opportunity, I taught her the names of some of the body parts.   Pretty soon her song went something like this: Me duele la cabeza Me duele, it hurts Me duele el brazo Me duele, it hurts Me duele, me

Too Many Victims

I have always felt an incredible amount of sadness not only for the victims of violence, but for the perpetrators.  Much (probably most) of the violence where I used to teach was both aimed at and committed by young men and I always felt (and feel; sadly, the violence has not abated) just as devastated for the people who took a life as for those who lost theirs. I understand why people may not agree with me; especially those who have lost loved ones to violence.  But I see these kids when they are just that, kids, and I know them sometimes before they do this.  I've been there when they're scared because they can't control their temper, when they feel such a strong desire for revenge that they can't see any other option, and when they are violent and bullying because that's all they've ever known.  And I think that is just as much of a tragedy as someone dying - it's just a different way of someone losing their life. Ever since I started teaching where