Sunday, December 12, 2010


In American Sign Language Pah! means "finally" or "success at last!"

Well, after 15 years and much badgering my friend Maria finally came to visit my classroom.

Over the years many of my friends have come in to teach lessons (thanks Ed, Jason, Ashley, Gregg, Sydney & Denise), accompany us on trips (gratitude to Joy & Kimy) or read a book.

I am definitely of the opinion that it takes a village. Bringing in experts to share their knowledge always seemed like a good idea to me and it adds excitement to the routine school day.

Especially if the visitor brings delicious cupcakes!

Maria came in the afternoon and joined us for our math lesson before beginning her read aloud of Who Will Help Santa this Year? by Jerry Pallotta.

An unexpected outcome of her visit was that she now says she would love to become a teacher.  I don't think she will actually pursue it but the fact that the thought even entered her mind speaks to how impressed she was with our students.

I remember when I was working with Maria many years ago I went to visit Lexington School for the Deaf and left there more than ever determined to spend my days teaching. It was a dream that came true for me. Once again I feel how blessed I am to wake up every day to do something that speaks to my heart and soul.  What a gift! And what a gift I have in her friendship. Thanks Maria!


Angella Lister said...

is that your classroom in the photo? omg, it looks wonderful! how amazing it would be to be a kid in that place. no wonder your kids are impressive. it speaks to your way of teaching them.

Mona said...

Your classroom is hep!

Gary, I came across a lot of children book sketches today, and thought about you!

I hope you and your Mom are doing well!

Gary said...

Angella - Thanks! I love our classroom with its little oasis you see in this picture. I call it the castle. A perfect place to sit and read. This is a prime example of my friends contributing. The chair is from Joy, the Chicka Chicka coconut tree & hand swen letters are from Dawn, the netting was inspired by Ashley & Jason from my trip to Italy, comic books from Stacy, the star light is Lauren's and on and on. One of these days we will meet and you can come read (if you'd like).

Mona - Sketches you created? Thanks for asking after my mom. She is doing wonderfully. I think she will be very impressed when I tell her you were asking about her from so far away. Hope all is well with you too.

Maria said...

It was my pleasure Gary! I had a really nice time, everyone was so nice. I look forward to visiting again soon.
Love you.

Pauline said...

The world is a better place because you chose to be a teacher - and a blogger, I might add :)

Gary said...

XOX Maria

Pauline - Children's book author/illustrator Todd Parr ends many of his books by writing "the world is a better place because of you" and I always thought it was such a positive, warm thing to write. Thank you. And let me add "The world is a better place because YOU chose to be a teacher - and a blogger" I'm in good company.

Barbara said...

I hope some day to be able to visit that beautiful classroom of yours. It is so obvious how much you love what you do!

If there is ever a sewing project you need help (from afar) with, sign me up! I have done things like make a whale propelled by multiple kids underneath when the kids in my son's (Jewish) preschool read the story of Jonah.

Gary said...

Barbara - Aren't you sweet! I will definitely keep you in mind if any sewing projects spring up. Maybe next year in first grade for Greek Mythology costumes in the dramatic play area? A Medusa headdress? A Helen of Troy gown? Ha! Can you imagine? Stay tuned...

When you are in NYC I'd love to have you visit. You can even teach a lesson.

Lynda said...

Hi Gary,

Love this post! The classroom looks great. You always use your creative talents to create an awesome classroom,

Lots of Love,



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