My students often lovingly bring me art work from home. They know I’m pleased to see their work so I’m often gifted with papers of random words they are proud to be able to write. I get pages pulled from coloring books and paint by number masterpieces of princesses and frequent I love Mrs. Kidder notes. Any item I’m given is admired and hung up in the room with great ceremony.
My 1950’s style classroom has few bulletin boards or even areas I can use for display. One wall has windows with counters below and 7 foot tall bulletin boards that reach to the ceiling. These boards are accessible only with a step ladder. The front of the room is dominated by a Smart Board and a tall bookshelf. I use magnets to attach student created artwork to the metal of the door jam. When the space is totally full I remove the gifts, and the guilt begins.
I don’t want to toss these offerings in the trash; I know the pride and love behind these items, I can’t keep them, yet tossing them pains me. I take them home to dispose of them. I tell them I’ve taken them home so show Mr. Kidder. I hope they think I’ve got them on my refrigerator, not in the trashcan next to it. Oh the pain of love.