On Tuesday of this week, I was talking with my kiddos about what to expect for our upcoming field trip. We are very fortunate to have several parent chaperones this time, and we were having a very serious discussion about how they would want someone to treat their parent if they were going on a field trip with us.
On Wednesday, I was away from my kiddos for the day. My fabulous, wonderful, incredible principal gives each grade level team a “Data Day” every quarter. We use it to grade benchmark assessments, look at what we need to review, where we can extend, work on report cards, and update our data cards. It’s pretty amazing.
During the meeting, we found out that a VERY LARGE chunk of our field trip funding had fallen through. We were exactly one week away from our trip. How in the WORLD were we going to break this to our kiddos?
We decided not to.
People, God did BIG things through Facebook. We (my team) hopped on and sent out a call for help to our friends and family. We needed (roughly) $1300 for about 130 3rd graders to go on a trip. 130 3rd graders who never travel outside of their trailer park or apartment complex. The oohs and aahs I hear every year on I-75 as we drive through Atlanta break my heart. We had to have the money by Monday at the latest. Would our friends and families be willing to “sponsor” a child for $10?
They came through for us in incredible ways. By Friday afternoon, we had the funds we needed. Our kids never even knew their field trip was in danger. It was one of the most amazing things I’ve seen in my 11 years of teaching.
On Wednesday, when we come back from our trip, I’m going to tell them what happened and how people they’ve never met saved the biggest day of their 3rd grade year. We will write dozens of thank you letters. But the most important word I want them to learn and understand on Wednesday is grateful.
I want them to love their field trip. I want them to come back to school with a dozen new memories and stories to tell their families. But more than that, I want them to be grateful for the kindnesses that were shown to them by complete strangers. People who love me (and my teacher peeps) took a minute out of their day to love on my kiddos. Isn’t that incredible?
So, I’m working this back into my weekly lessons.
I don’t remember why this didn’t make it into the weekly rotation this year, but I was excited to find it when I was digging through my files on Friday afternoon. Before leaving me for the day, my kids will simply finish the thinking stems and tell me one thing they are grateful for this week, something new they learned, and one thing they are looking forward to.
I hope this is something you can use to celebrate the big and small victories in your classroom this week, or this month. It’s really eye-opening and fun to see what your kids appreciate and take away from your classroom each week.
I’ll try to remember to take pictures of ours this week and share them with you on Friday.
Somebody remind me! 🙂
Do you do anything like this with your kids? I’d love to hear about it!