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Brief Word

November 23, 2021

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At yesterday’s assembly at Lotspeich, second grade teacher Danielle Necessary led the students in a lovely reflection on gratitude.

She began with a “mindful moment” asking students to focus, not on their breath, but on picturing someone in their life to whom they felt gratitude. Then she asked students to describe how thinking about that person made them feel. “Peaceful,” one student offered. “Confident,” said another. “Protected and safe,” added a third.

Then she read aloud from a beautiful picture book which illustrated the Cherokee custom of expressing gratitude throughout the year. Colorful drawings illuminated those precious moments, in every season, when, by tribal custom, the Cherokee celebrate the blessings of life and of family and of the natural world.    

She encouraged students to cultivate in their own hearts this same attitude of gratitude, not just on Thanksgiving, but in all the days of their lives. She asked them to reflect, at least thrice each day, on the blessings they have been given. And she enjoined them to find ways to express their gratitude to all who enrich their lives.

If the students didn’t learn anything else that day (and I assure you, they did!), that lesson alone would have made the day worthwhile. Happy Thanksgiving to all!

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