I‘m not sure what your elementary school was like, but mine was AWESOME. I went to the school around the corner from my house in the Medical Center area of Houston.
Seeing that the Medical Center is full of doctors and patients from all over the world and my school was a magnet school for arts bringing in kids from all areas, Roberts Elementary was relatively diverse. The Magnet of Arts part also meant that we would have weekly sing-alongs in the cafeteria with our principle playing the piano and all of the students singing. One of my favorite songs was a elementary approps rap that went like this:
Knowledge is power, I know what I know.
The more you learn, the farther you’ll go.
If you get an education, you’ll be talking a stand.
Because knowledge is power, grab it while you can!!
It’s funny what sticks with you as a kid, don’t worry y’all the fast food song is still permanently ingrained in my head too, but this knowledge is power thing really hit home for me.
School wasn’t always easy, seeing that learning disabilities are/will for ever be the bane of my existence. But, I knew someone would spend the time to explain things for the millionth time in the millionth way and I never questioned if I would have resources to help shape the learner/person I am today. I knew in some weird way, that my knowledge was going to be my power.
Anyway, 2 months ago when I was planning the schedule for one of my socialization groups I run in Beverly Hills, I decided we should have a book drive for the kids I volunteer for at the Boys and Girls Club. The 90210 kids made posters and passed out flyers and the response was incredible.
I had tears in my eyes today as I sorted the some odd 600+ books that had been donated because the people in that community were so generous.
I brought these books to the Boys and Girls Club I volunteer at today with the intention of helping create the first library. The school told me there was no space for them, that it just wasn’t feasible.
So instead, the B&GC kids got to take the books home. The glimmer in a child’s eye when they say, “Wait, this book can be mine? I’ve don’t have any books of my own,” or when the most badass of all the 4th grade boys asks separately if he can come pick before the others come because he knows his reading level is low, but he wants a book; are the questions that make me sure that kids are yearning for stories, imagination, and to know more about the world, no matter their zip code.
The millions of pages handed out today, that are being cuddled in bed tonight, are creating knowledge that emPOWER kids more than the simple words on each of those pages were probably ever intended to do. AND Connecting communities that couldn’t be more different, with “If You Give a Moose a Muffin,” has some serious power too.
As a social worker, I am called to create this power in my kiddos and I couldn’t be more thankful for the opportunity to work with people from all walks of life daily. I encourage you to share a little of what you know today, to whoever you encounter, because this book drive also taught me sharing is caring.
…yup i’m full of cliche tag lines…peg me as a guidance counselor poster walking…I feel pretty good about it. 🙂