Tuesday, 22 November 2011

Something I am proud of

Who or what makes me proud? I bet you’re not surprised to see my children below. It’s a bit of a gimme really, but I must tell you why, right at this moment, my children are making me proud.

The timing of the prompt for The Gallery couldn’t have been more apt. Two weeks ago, the children came home from school with a blank poster template. It was school council election time and they were seeking candidates. The children had to draw a picture of themselves or place a photograph in the middle and then write why they would be a good school councillor or share some of their ideas for the school council.

This photo is old but it's appropriate they are in their school uniform.

The weekend was busy; I was busy all Saturday and because husband was away on his epic run, the children went to grandparents for the day. It was Sunday before we even got to look at them. Before I really had chance to look at them, Monkey had drawn a picture of himself and wrote a few things on the poster - in that lovely phonetic spelling only 6 year olds can do. We talked about it and I asked him to think of ideas and he took it away to do some more work. Missy Woo was harder - although she happily draw a picture, she was struggling for ideas so I asked her to think of things she likes to do and whether the school could do more of that. We came up with a cake-making club so she wrote it down in her own little 5 year old way.

So, the posters went back to school on the day of the deadline. Bit of a close one as they got put to one side and I only just remembered to check they made it back into their bags. I reminded the children to hand their posters in as I dropped them at school – and then I forgot about it.

Last Friday, I arrived at school to collect them and Monkey came legging it out of school as soon as he was allowed, fit to burst. "Mummy, I'm a school councillor!" he beamed with pride.

It turns out that 5 or 6 children in his class had put themselves forward and he had come joint second, getting the same number of votes as one of his friends. The lovely thing is that the teachers decided that they can both be councillors so his class have three representatives instead of the usual two. He can't wait to go to his first meeting and to get his badge to say he's a councillor.

Missy Woo was a bit mopey as she didn’t get to be a councillor but the blow was softened as she received a head teacher’s award for making the effort to create her lovely poster. She told me she knows one person voted for her and it occurred to me I’m not even sure she voted for herself! Knowing Missy Woo, she probably voted for her friend because she’s like that. It probably wouldn’t even occur to her that she could vote for herself.

I love that they did this off their own backs. Their posters weren’t slick or fancy; they were all their own work. It was something they wanted to do and they set about doing with enthusiasm. I love that they were keen to stand as councillors and help to make their school better for all. And even if Missy Woo didn’t get to be a councillor this year, I’m sure her time will come. She’s caring and lovely, and looks after the children in her class when they are ill, injured or upset.

Tonight is parents’ evening at school and we’ll get to talk about their progress with their class teachers. Obviously, I can’t be completely sure what will be said but I’m fairly sure that my pride in them will increase. So, right now, I can’t be prouder of both of them.

I must remember this when they are driving me mad of an afternoon.

What are you proud of? 
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