Friday, December 12, 2014

Fear not!

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Sleep in Heavenly Peace
December marked frantic use of scissors, glitter, and paper in schools every where. Teachers reluctantly set out the peppermint paste, letting chaos take its course. 


Influenza and Christmas frenzy drove the pace.

Each classroom reflected garish joy and vacant student desks as days counted down to one big event: Annual Christmas Pageant.  If ever there were a bigger event, the community did not know it.

The District Music teacher, Mrs. Harris, traveled to every school before settling on this one school to perform that year's pageant.

Mrs. Harris was relentless in her expectations and doling out various roles as fear hung in the air while performers marched to her music. Seventh and eighth graders became The Holy Family with younger students filling out as angels, elves, and sugar canes.

Influenza began wiping out the Holy Family and shepherds.  But Mrs. Harris did not break step or sweat; Mrs. Harris drafted the best of the next grade down.

In sixth grade, all girls were hoping,  Please oh please let me be Mary! Their hearts, minds and eyes pleaded.

Briefly, Mrs. Harris laid eagle eyes on a few, but moved on.  Those girls would remain angels that year.  The pageant took place with Holy Family intact while Angels waited in the wings, scratching silver garland halos. 

Day after Pageant Glory, angels' desks were vacant,  each absentee sick with influenza. A few elves were out as well.

Please note that this memory comes from a then 10 year brain.  I discovered that "Mrs. Harris" was kind and a very good teacher.  She taught us all how to read music, and as a result I learned to play the piano, due to her strong teaching.

22 comments:

  1. Oh I remember those Christmas concerts. In a one room school they were a big social event.

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    1. So glad you had that experience! Were you as nervous as I was (angel)?

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  2. All children should be as blessed.

    Great memory.

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    1. It is a good memory. And it was a huge event; it would not be allowed now.

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  3. Ten year old brain memories are grand. I recall fainting and falling off the top riser of the the choir of angels.

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  4. Funny how everyone was out sick afterwards.
    You have a far better memory than I.

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    1. In our small school, 'flu traveled quickly,

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  5. Good to realise you appreciated Mrs. Harris, I have been responsible for many of those concerts over the years, hope some children have happy memories :0)

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    1. Mrs. "Harris" taught us how to read music. I would not have learned to play piano if not for her. I know your students have fond memories of that time.

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  6. I still remember a few, can't believe I actually wanted to be in them then lol

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    1. I KNOW! My brothers were reluctant shepherd for their entire elementary school lives. Fortunately they were in the back. I never got to be Mary.

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  7. We didn't have them - but I did (thankfully) come across more than one Mrs Harris. I wish I could do so now - to thank them.

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    1. In my adulthood, I wrote her a letter to thank her for her teaching. My mother sent me her address, since it was in the phone book then.

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  8. How awful that everyone became sick after the pageant! Mrs. Harris sounds like she was a wonderful music teacher. I'm sure she appreciated your thoughtful note.

    Julie

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    1. The sickness was bound to happen. It was an explosion of sickness. Mrs. Harris was relieved that we all hung on long enough to present the pageant. AND that no one dropped out the night of the pageant.

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  9. A ranch doll's house, that sounds very exotic, and would have been impossible to imagine in the 1940's :0)

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    1. Ranch houses were one story, small rooms, and fit on minimum land. The 1950s were their onset and really hit their stride in the 1970s. My doll house was made of tin or something, with all the details embossed/painted on the walls. I liked the decor.

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  10. There were a lot of sick kids at Jordan's (my great nephew) school. But the teachers trudged on.
    I think teachers are the angels.
    R

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  11. Strong teaching gets an A+ in my book. My youngest had a NICE NICE NICE teacher last year. This year his teacher is not un-nice, but she's very firm. And he's learning like crazy!! Love that lady!!

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  12. A real shame to have influenza about at the same time the pageant was going on.
    I have memories of several really good teachers, they really make a difference don't they?

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Go ahead...it won' t hurt...I'd love to hear what you think!