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Personal Narrative: Why I Love Whales

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A boy named Jack told me he loved whales. It was a hot August morning in Manhattan, the heat was unbearable even in shorts and a tank top. After a ten minute walk my body transitioned from hot to freezing as I entered the Children’s Museum of the Arts. It was my third summer working there as an intern in the public fine arts studio and the weekly, theme-based, summer camp for kids ages six to thirteen. This particular week, I worked as a counselor in a weeklong puppet class, where we did everything from finger puppets to marionettes. Every morning from 8:00 to 9:00, we did free drawing in the art-filled main gallery. The distinctive thing about the main gallery was how big and bright it was, illuminated like a soccer field at night.

I sat
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Kids are smart and they don’t even know it, and they need a teacher to help harness and encourage that curiosity and creativity, going with them on that journey. Some whales are spotted, and Jack liked that pattern best, so I intentionally helped him construct colorful spots on the whale’s back. Jack also was worried that the whale might encounter unfriendly whales, so we gave the whale sharp cardboard teeth to defend itself. At the end of the long week of puppet making, Jack had made something that was about the size of a toaster, bigger than his head. It wasn’t just charming because of its looks but because it reflected what Jack truly felt a whale should look like. Other kids made fairies and dragons, but the most imaginative puppet in the end was actually Jack’s whale. He taught me that the most satisfying and captivating work, no matter what kind, is work that reflects true…show more content…
I very much needed this kind of attention in elementary school because I have ADHD and a language-based learning disability. I found a huge difference in my learning experience going from a public school with limited resources to a private school where teachers really cared about my personal growth. Everything changed and my world opened up because my first teacher, Rachel Mazor, went the extra mile to foster my potential and ingenuity. A teacher’s job is to say “yes” to a student who shows initiative, not to shut them down and say that their way of doing something is wrong. Jack went above and beyond by having fun with his project and harnessing his imagination in a way I wish I still could. I want to be a teacher because I want to see kids faces light up with interest. I want to learn how to cater my teaching to meet the needs of every student, no matter how many, because each child’s unique characteristics are what make them, and Jack, so
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