Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Multicultural Resources

As part of my final year in Graduate Studies, I am doing a Leadership Project. The project I am developing is a wiki for classroom teachers here in Massachusetts to use in order to help the diverse population of students in their classrooms find a connection in Language Arts Classes.

As our classrooms become more diverse, we need to be able to access literature/poetry from the countries from which our students come. The "ideal" would be to find books/poetry that have been translated into English so that the teacher might have the ability to read and understand the same text as the student. However, less than "ideal" will work just fine.

So, here is my challenge to any of my international readers...Send me the names (links to websites if you have them) of the poets and authors you loved best as a child or that your child loves best. Please tell me what country the author/poet is from and in what language they are writing.

Thank you for your help!

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

On Love and greeting card holidays

Tomorrow is one of the biggest greeting card holidays next to Christmas. I have a real problem with it, as I do with the commercialism of Christmas as well as the assumption by retailers that everyone celebrates these holidays. But, I digress.

Valentine's Day, as many know, began as a Christian (Catholic) holyday in remembrance of St. Valentine, a bishop who was imprisoned for his faith. There are several legends that explain how the day became associated with love. In one, it is said, "
Valentine is said to have spent a year in rigorous imprisonment during which he was missed a lot by children. They began to toss loving notes and flowers between the bars of his cell window. To an extent, this legend may explain the tradition of exchanging notes and flowers on Valentine's Day.

Some scholars believe that during his stay in prison Valentine made friends with jailer's blind daughter who at times brought to him notes and flowers from children. Whenever, possible Valentine also replied to the notes. Days before his execution, Valentine prayed for the jailer's daughter and she regained her sight. Before his death, Valentine is also said to have written a farewell note for the jailer's daughter and signed it "From Your Valentine. This expression is popular even till date."

Today, we celebrate February 14 with little to no knowledge of why this particular day has been set aside to tell our loved ones about our devotion to them. Here is where I have a problem. For too many, it is easy to say, "I love you," once or twice a year. The rest of the time their actions do not demonstrate what their holiday cards so lovingly state.

I believe we should celebrate our love for each other every minute of every day of our lives. If we celebrate Love , every day of the year, what a wonderful life we will have created!

Don't wait until February 14 (and only then) to tell your loved ones they are loved, show them, now! Love is all there is!