"I Want to Give Everything I Have"

It’s the end of the school year! I’m very proud of our junior high students, how hard they worked and the character they have demonstrated in how they treat their teachers and one another. They’re doing a great job! I wanted to share with you a story from this week, highlighting one of our times together from Wrap-Up, the last class of every day. 

You've have seen the information about the school supply drive, and some families have even contributed already - thank you! When I first introduced the school supply drive, the students asked a series of questions which exposed their intelligence. Questions are what make a good student a great student.  I listened to their questions and held my answers for our discussion time, encouraging their curiosity and thoughts on the matter. Mrs. Mathews and I set up our Wrap-Up class to help them make the necessary connection, between the recipients of their generosity across the world, and the very practical and intentional work of collecting school supplies to donate. In order to do this, we showed them a video featuring one of our very own Academy teachers Ms. Rebekah Davis (and Mrs Dailey). I was pleased to be able to answer the students, “Yes, we do know the students. We know their families. We know their teachers. We know their principal.” Scroll down on this webpage to view the video: Writing a Different Story for Girls.

After viewing the video, I quickly noticed a change in their response to the school supply drive. They had learned some answers to their questions, and now they had new ones. One student immediately got up from her seat and walked over to her locker. She opened it, pulled out a ream of paper from her own school supplies, and said enthusiastically, “Can I please donate this?” as she placed it in the donation box. Another student, who usually keep his opinions to himself, responded by saying, “I want to give everything I have. Whatever they need. What’s on their list?” And yet another student said, “I’m sad that the girls don’t have a voice. But it’s so cool to be able to give them something that helps them produce something they're proud of, like that [book they made]. Should I talk to my family about donating some ceiling fans?” The other students agreed, and said they are excited to participate in a school supply drive for the students at Aquatic Public School in India. 

As their global consciousness collectively increased during the span of this 30 minute Wrap-Up class, they showed me how much they have matured this year. Their sensitivity to the need of other students their age was evident in their words of compassion. I love these students and their questions, their concerns, and their resolve to be generous people. Rather than simply concentrating on what they want to do with their time and their energy, they are learning to bring themselves before God and be compassionate young people. And although the end of the semester strongly emphasizes assessing their academic progress from all that they have learned this year (which is wonderful), it was touching to take a moment together to consider our place in the world as God’s children to give generously and cheerfully. It’s a privilege to witness their holistic development each day. 

Thank you, parents of these 7th and 8th graders, for supporting them and encouraging compassion. Your examples have such an influence on them, as I’m sure you’re well-aware. I was moved by the way the Lord worked in these students that afternoon. I hope that you all enjoy the video we shared, and I encourage you to have conversations about it with your student. Again, thank you for participating in the school supply drive with us. What a great way to conclude our school year! 

*Also, please note that the school year begins and ends on different dates at APS in India than it does for us. APS students will go to school during the months of June and July also. 100% of supplies will be hand-delivered to APS in India! If you are interested in purchasing the book referred to in the video, please let me know and I’ll make sure to get one for you! 

Written by: Mrs. Heather Maute, Junior High Homeroom Teacher