Tuesday, February 10, 2015

A Great Time to Dream

January has come (and passed…) and for this month’s bulletin board, Josh and I knew that we needed to include New Year’s Day and Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. As a way to make this one cohesive idea, we made the board “dream” themed. We felt as though this tied the idea of New Year’s resolutions and the “I Have a Dream” speech together nicely. We wrote “It’s a Great Time to Dream” in both English and Hebrew, and our question of the month was “What are your dreams?” We ask all of the tough questions.

I felt it was incredibly important to teach the students about MLK, Jr. Aside from the fact that he was a huge mover and shaker in American history, he also advocated love, education, and service which all hold special places in my heart. Josh and I presented the idea of teaching the 5th graders (Kitah Hay) about MLK, Jr. to Rosi and, of course, she was very supportive.

The lesson turned out to be one of the best I’ve ever facilitated. We had the opportunity to teach 2 different 5th grade classes, and both responded really well.

We began the lesson with this video of MLK, Jr.:

For those who can’t/don’t want to watch, it’s a pretty cool video where the King himself (is that an appropriate way to refer to him? Probably not) explains that Israel is “one of the great outpost of democracy in the world.” NO BIG DEAL. 

Next, we played this video for the kids:

Since this video was a bit longer, we stopped after every sentence or so and worked with the kids on translating the words to Hebrew. The students’ main English teacher also helped us with this for both videos. The video’s not perfect and COMPLETELY drops the ball when speaking about MLK’s assassination but it did a good job explaining the history to the students.

Then came the MOST EXCITING PART!!! Caps and lots of exclamation points are necessary because I could geek out over this for hours. We asked the kids to create a dream bubble and gave them this prompt to fill out: “I have a dream that _____.” We really didn’t know what to expect. We unsurprisingly got some silly responses -- like “I won’t be in school” -- but for the most part their answers just reminded me how brilliant children are and how fortunate I am to be working with these little scholars!

Some may have spelling or grammatical errors, but pay attention to the messages behind the words - these were 100% the kids' ideas. I said it once and I'll say it again - kids just understand life so much better than we do.

That's a lot of salsa! (Get it? 'Cause Pace...salsa...)
SO MANY GOALS SO LITTLE TIME... We need more girls to grow up with these dreams!
How we displayed the work of our little scholars
Anyone who knows me knows that I am unapologetically obsessed with motivational quotes. They dominate my phone background, my walls, and my Pinterest boards. Some of my favorite quotes come from MLK, and I’m willing to bet that City Year sparked my fascination with his words. City Year uses MLK, Jr. Day as a “Day on, not off,” and has different service projects running across the country.  I wore my Timberland boots and khakis– which were part of my CY uniform – in solidarity on MLK, Jr. Day here in Israel.

And now, I leave you with some of my favorite MLK, Jr. quotes:

“Life's most persistent and urgent question is, 'What are you doing for others?'”

“Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.”

"Everybody can be great... because anybody can serve. You don't have to have a college degree to serve. You don't have to make your subject and verb agree to serve. You only need a heart full of grace. A soul generated by love."

Hope you’re all inspired. Now go out and change the world or something.

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