Where creativity grows

Category: Behind the Scenes

Behind the Scenes with Sampson

There were so many inspirations for this story. It started with the title of one of the Daily Spark journal entries, which was Cop. Dr. Dancer. In addition to being the German teacher at my high school, I am also part of an eclectic group of educators who puts together a yearly event called Career-Con. The purpose of the event is to introduce students to career professionals in the fields they are interested in to find out what it is actually like in those fields. I know so many people who followed career paths based on incomplete information or bad motives (ie I’ll become a lawyer because they make a lot of money or I like massages, so I’ll become a massage therapist). I love when my students ask me for advice on career choices. We talk about all the things that might be important to them. Without steering them in any particular direction, I try hard to provide them with as many pieces of information so that they can make an informed decision. 

A few weeks ago, one of my level one students asked me if I liked being a teacher. What a loaded question when we are in the middle of a pandemic! I could not lie— I love being a teacher and even more so when I get to talk about what I love about it. Don’t get me wrong, I also told him the things that make it the hardest job you could ever imagine. Then he told me he was trying to decide between being a cop and being a teacher. I chuckled and explained to him that he must be a helper like I am. He was overjoyed that someone understood. 

In Sampson’s story, I take it one step further and add a third option- dancer. With that choice, he can help bring joy to people’s lives through the art form that has changed his life. Does he follow the path of money and become a doctor? Does he follow the path of helping fight crime? Or does he follow his heart? 

Read Sampson’s story here

Behind the Scenes with Rosie

Many of my Oodle Doodle stories are based on journal prompts from a book I bought for school when I started teaching called The Daily Spark. I loved the idea of turning the stories on their heads and telling them from the characters point of view. I went through the book and jotted down a list of almost one hundred prompts and each time I want to write a story, I pick a prompt and let it go wherever it goes.

When I saw the prompt, “What’s in a name?” I knew immediately that I had to base the story on my Grandma. 10 years ago this week, my Grandma broke a promise she made to me when I was a little kid…and that she reiterated many times when I was an adult— that she was going to live forever. Even after she had a massive heart attack at the age of 86 and only had 10% of her heart functioning, she maintained that she was not going anywhere. She was not deluded, she just lived her life on her terms.

As I sit here in The Oodlearium, I am surrounded by so many wonderful memories of her, but there is a whole in my heart that will never be filled. This story was just one little tribute to her. There is really nothing I could say or do to truly capture the impact she made on my life or how very much she was loved by every single person who met her. She was strong, brave and beautiful.

I really do wish you could have known her.

You can read Rosie’s story here.

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