Monday, October 24, 2011

Model Student

When I was in the 5th grade, we studied weather systems. For my weather report, I chose to explain the power and fury of the hurricane the only way I knew how - in song.

A hurricane is a tropical storm,
With floods and winds and rain.
It starts way out in the ocean,
Where it huffs and puffs and strains.

Catchy, no? Is it any wonder that I remember the words 30 years later?

That is the same year I did an interpretive dance to 'Mountain Music',by the country supergroup Alabama. It was a tap dance. I had never taken a tap class in my life.

Other 'special projects' during my school years included a rewriting of The Eurythmics 'Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)' to explain the Electoral College, and a dramatic interpretation of the Bay of Pigs in which I portrayed both President John F. Kennedy and Fidel Castro.

I am so grateful to the many teachers who indulged my desire for non-traditional learning.

So, when we went in for Katie's parent teacher conference today, and the first thing the teacher said was 'Katie must grow up to be an actress.', I couldn't help but beam with pride.

She is the first one to offer (or get elected) to write a script, or make a poster, or recreate a traditional Inuit Home using egg cartons and cotton balls. When she comes blazing through the door and announces 'I have a project!', I don't know which one of us is more excited.

Listening to her talk about the things she loves, her hands flapping all over the place and her eyes dancing and her goofy 10 year old laugh, it all makes me want to grab her and smother her in kisses. It makes me want to keep her here forever, just like this, because she is perfect. Even though she is a complete slob and prone to tears and pinches her sister, she is perfect.

My dad once said to me of Katie, 'She's just like you, but nicer.' I'll take it one step further. She's just like me, but better. She is an extraordinary person, and brings me immeasurable joy.


  1. I wish I had students who were excited about projects. That would be a wonderful thing!!

  2. great post! love it! Katie is a lucky girl to have you for a mama, you "get" her so well. :)


  3. What a loving post but I am not sure she is better because you are pretty special. However if you don't call me back I am not talking to you again.

  4. Several years ago at a conference we were asked to perform a skit to welcome our newly elected president of the company. I wrote and choreographed a song to the music of The Beatles tune "Michelle". Our new president's name was Michelle Landell......As Weezer would say....the fruit doesn't fall too far from the tree!!! Love you Kelly...
    Love you Katie, you are the best actress I know..Grandma

  5. Sandi, if you want to send us a project, we'll do it! Lol
    Thank you, MOV. We are peas and carrots.
    We love you too, Grandma.