Only One You

Dear Reader:

I have a kindness website that pops up occasionally sharing random acts of kindness and also planned acts of kindness…this idea, today, falls under the latter. This is a story of an art teacher who came up with a creative way to make every student (she taught in her elementary school -over 700) feel special and unique.

Sharon Moyes started the art project as a kick-off to a new school year by reading all her students the story of a little fish who learned about the importance of individuality.

This elementary school in Indiana combined creativity and literature to create a beautiful piece of art that will encourage students for years to come to be true to themselves.

Students in grades K-5 at  Sharon Elementary School in Newburgh, IN painted rocks inspired by the book Only One You, by Linda Kranz to create a colorful stone lined path outside the school entrance.

Only One You is an inspirational children’s book about Adri, a little fish who is about to go explore the ocean on his own. His mother and father tell him some of the important lessons they’ve learned throughout their lives in hopes that it will help him on his journey. They remind him, “Always be on the lookout for a new friend,” and “Find your own way. You don’t have to follow the crowd.” The book stresses how everyone is unique, and that each of us have something to contribute to the world. “There’s only one you in this great big world. Make it a better place.”

Moyes shared pictures of her students painting the rocks and the final result of the project on the school’s art class Facebook page, where they’ve been shared over 18,000 times and counting. Parents and fellow teachers are amazed with the project, with many saying they want to petition their own local schools to follow Sharon elementary’s lead.

Each student painted their own unique rock inspired by the fish in the book using indoor/outdoor glossy acrylic craft paint. Moyes says she has approximately 740 students, enough to make a gorgeous path of brightly colored rocks outside the school’s main doors.

Kids grow so much in elementary school, not just physically, but in who they are as people. It’s the beginning of meaningful friendships and when kids start to navigate complex social situations on their own. Not only are these stones a colorful addition to a school, they can serve as a daily reminder to students that no matter what, they’re special and that they have the power to change the world. This art project uses simple materials, but its message is a hugely powerful one.

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This project reminded me of a sweet gift Anne passed onto me Wednesday when we had lunch to catch up from her Ireland trip. A friend of ours from church, Teddy Marcot, sent a copy of the book Everybody Needs a Rock to me. It is the story of a little girl, a special lover of rocks,  who creates 10 rules on how to pick the best rock to become one’s best friend. So sweet.  Thank you Teddy so much for the story!

Does anybody remember the rock named Ebenezer in the Bible by Samuel…it’s a good story!

A Stone Named Ebenezer? What’s With THAT?

Submitted by Laquita Ward

Theme: What is an Ebenezer stone?
Object: a rock
Scripture: 1 Sam. 7:12
Do you know what this is? It’s not a rock-it’s a stone. Have you ever wonder what the difference is between a rock and a stone? If I see this rock in the woods or wherever, it’s called a ‘rock’ but if I take it from its natural place and put it in my garden, it’s called a ‘stone’. The rock itself hasn’t changed but what’s being used for has, that’s why its name has changed.

Why would someone want to keep a rock they found? Maybe it’s to remind them of where they’ve been or of a special place or time. Maybe it reminds them of something special that happened.

I believe that God thinks stones are very important. Look how many He made! I can’t even count how many stones are in my yard!

In the Bible, Samuel took a large stone and placed it between the towns of Mizpah and Jeshanah. He even gave the stone a name. He named it Ebenezer, which means ‘the stone of help’ for he said, ‘up to this point the Lord has helped us.’ I Sam. 7:12.

Many times in the Bible a stone or a pile of stones has been used as a reminder of how God has helped someone. The stories of Noah, Joshua, Jacob, and Samuel are just a few.

When you go home today, I’d like for each of you to find a special stone and put it in a special place to remind you of God’s faithfulness, His mercy in His forgiveness, and how He is always there to help you.

 

How about “pet rocks”  from a the mid-seventies ..anybody else remember them? Everyone picked the perfect rock for themselves based on size,  smell, shape, color, texture/touch, silence, and place.

Today “faith rocks” with one word on them… like hope, beauty, faith, gratitude, courage, etc. are found at most gift shops. I have received several and put them in my pockets before going to a doctor’s appointment. We all feel more secure when we have our own adult “Linus blanket” (a.k.a. stone) in our pockets.

This is the stone I need to be holding right now. This week has been pretty stressful with my little blog and its complications with Facebook connections and loss of 713 followers associated with Facebook.

Thank goodness, with the help of John, and a wonderful “Happy Engineer” (Jorge Calle) assigned to me to help with my Facebook problem…I got Facebook re-connected but  had lost my Facebook password/username and couldn’t pull up my stats page to try to re-locate the lost followers.

And then this morning, when I turned on the blog…not only had the 700 followers reappeared…but even more  subscribers popped up for a total of 918. I will have to admit I cried…I had just about given up hope that the glitch with Facebook could be restored and then it just happened.

I think I need to get a “Miracle” rock because, out of the blue, it fixed itself. Except only it didn’t…I received a message yesterday afternoon (after finishing the blog) from Jorge that the problem had been a synchronization issue which he fixed. Hurrah Jorge…YOU are my miracle worker!

(However, he did warn me that starting August 1 Facebook is changing policies regarding personal blogs and public domain availability.

(*In addition, it is important for you to know that due to a change that Facebook is introducing to their platform you won’t be able to continue using a Facebook Profile starting August 1, 2018. The best option here will be to migrate to a Facebook Page.)

***So it looks like there are perhaps more hurdles to jump but I am tired right now from the past synchronization issue…I need time to rest and celebrate this small victory before starting to attack more “tech” challenges. I will wait and see how this all shakes out. Just wanted to give you a heads up.

Blogs are not about numbers…I know my little blog is pretty minute compared to millions of others out there in cyberspace…but I love and appreciate each new follower who joins our little family. In fact the best part of blogging is meeting new people… like so many of you reading today.

When I thought I had lost 713 of you…it felt like one’s family being torn apart. Today is a day for rejoicing!

So until tomorrow…. Mev, like you said yesterday, together “We Got ‘Dis”...(yours and Jimmy’s call to action over life’s problems.) And you are so right…as long as we have God…we all “got dis.”

“Today is my favorite day”  Winnie the Pooh

Thank you Anne for my Irish Linen…the colors are perfect in my kitchen!

 

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About Becky Dingle

I was born a Tarheel but ended up a Sandlapper. My grandparents were cotton farmers in Laurens, South Carolina and it was in my grandmother’s house that my love of storytelling began beside an old Franklin stove. When I graduated from Laurens High School, I attended Erskine College (Due West of what?) and would later get my Masters Degree in Education/Social Studies from Charleston Southern. I am presently an adjunct professor/clinical supervisor at CSU and have also taught at the College of Charleston. For 28 years I taught Social Studies through storytelling. My philosophy matched Rudyard Kipling’s quote: “If history were taught in the form of stories, it would never be forgotten.” Today I still spread this message through workshops and presentations throughout the state. The secret of success in teaching social studies is always in the story. I want to keep learning and being surprised by life…it is the greatest teacher. Like Kermit said, “When you’re green you grow, when you’re ripe you rot.”
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2 Responses to Only One You

  1. bcparkison says:

    Like minds I tell you….I have a young friend who has just finished a bone marrow transplant and is kinda in isolation for a while as they make sure it “takes. Years ago I came across this little bit from Carolyn Warnel called My Pocket Buddy..It goes like this. When I reach into my pocket I find a little stone. I put it there to remind me that I am not alone. When i am scared or frightened I can always know…That God is always with me no matter where I go.Just like my little buddy, an ordinary stone.
    I will be sending it to him soon. My grand son was into rock keeping when very small and of course I still have some of them. I chose one, cleaned it up and printed on it” I am not alone.”Wish I had thought of it sooner but better now than later.

    Like

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