We finished Les Miserables on Friday. My students were stunned as we went through the turbulent changes that Victor Hugo packs into the book. It was kind of fun to go through half a day and explain the French Revolution and what the ABC society was all about. I had them connect to the student walk-outs in CA and AZ. I played the 2008 version of the movie for the final film segment of the story.
As Jean Valjean, Liam Neeson, walks away from the river, I paused the movie and had the students talk about what they saw in his face; the freedom, the happiness. Then we talked about what other people they’ve been studying might have had this same look on their faces. Students right away mentioned, freed slaves, women after they got the right to vote, followers of Martin Luther King Jr. and Caesar Chavez. We discussed how my graduation had me feeling like I was free to begin my new life.
Today, (now technically yesterday since I’m posting this a day after I wrote it) they began planning their final project, a small-group collaboration of all the work they’ve been producing this last month. They will present their projects to the whole school on Friday.
They are feverishly planning how to visually display everything they’ve been learning, feeling, and wondering about. They have to answer the question, “Can 1 person change society?”, and there is already some interesting debates happening in their groups. I am glad to have them finally started on the projects and it’s wonderful to see them working so hard, especially now at the end of the year.
Aahh my graduation was on Saturday. I can’t believe I am done with any kind of undergraduate anything! It feels surreal. I’m still getting used to the idea. What a crazy, wonderful, hectic weekend. I had quite a bit of family stay with us. I am forever grateful to my dad and step mom for all the work and help and support they were. Thane’s mom just left today and she was also extraordinary. My momma, Jean, and Brian cooked for days to have a wonderful, delicious feast for all of the guests! I can’t ever thank them enough.
I got to drive a ’66 Shelby Cobra as one of my graduation gifts!! I am truly in awe. It felt like something I’ve seen in an old movie. Man, driving must have been SO fun before power everything. It was really cool to steer …and the wind in my hair! Of course the hair was also in my eyes a couple times, but it felt amazing to drive that car!
I’ve been looking in to a few places to take my art to this summer. I plan to paint like a starving artist this summer J along with teaching a few evening classes etc.
I am TRULY looking forward to getting back to learning Spanish, staying in shape, feeling like I have enough time to put my clothes away after they get washed, and reading a few books just for fun. And being able to write whenever I feel like it instead of the few spare moments that accidently get thrown my way. Ok, time to grade the final weeks papers! I am actually a little sad that it is my last week of student teaching……