So many of my students say and do things that mark my life in different and unique ways....today was one that I won't forget.
Let me give you a little background info. on Juan P. and my classroom. From the beginning of the year I make my classroom library a huge deal and well....I just make books a big deal. If a book is lying on the floor my kids almost gasp as if something has died. My students are all English Language Learners and so reading is something they don't get too excited about...so I do everything in my power to make it the most exciting thing ever! I freak out over new books, gasp at the sight of a precious book on the floor, and bring new books each week for my kids to eww and ahh over!
So Juan P..... Juan is a sweet boy (can sometimes be a goof-ball) who loves to be friends with everyone. Like the rest of my students(I am at a title 1 school where every child is on free-reduced lunch) Juan's family struggles financially. His dad works at the chicken plant and his mom just got sent back to Mexico.
Every month I give my students Scholastic Book Orders because it's an opportunity to get them excited about books and the books are usually sold at a much cheaper price. Every month I have watched Juan study the form up and down, up and down but he never buys anything. 2 weeks ago I gave the order form and he walked in the next morning with the order form filled out and his money in a sandwich baggie. He counted out the change and handed it to me and said, "This one Mrs. Moore...I want this one!'"
I replied, "Ewww...."Boy at War" great choice Juan! This is so exciting! It's your first book order!" He said, "Yup....it's a Christmas present."
"Awesome! What a great gift!"
I sent the forms off and didn't think anything else about it. Well....everyday after that order was sent off Juan would ask, "Mrs. Moore, when do you think those books will be in? Do you think it will be here before Christmas?"
"Yes Juan! They will get here! I'm sure of it." I would say.
Today they came in. I passed out the books everyone ordered. Juan received his and a few moments later Juan comes up to me and says, "Here."
"It's yours Mrs. Moore. I bought "Boy at War" because you love books and you love World War II because your grandad fought in World War II."
"Oh." (with big tears in my eyes)
"Thank you Sweetheart...you are so thoughtful." (and then I squeezed him so hard he probably couldn't breathe!)
P.K. has been teaching about intentional acts of Christmas lately...well....i can't think of anything more intentional than my sweet Juan. He has it figured out and he's only 10.