The election of 2017 was met with shock and disbelief by many who had assumed Hillary Clinton would walk away with the presidency. Millions of those people protested across the country after Donald Trump was inaugurated on Friday. Yet there was something more subtle happening in one second grade classroom, and the lesson is going viral.
Love What Matters picked up the message. And it is a good one. Explaining any politics to a second grader can be difficult, but our unprecedented political moment is even more complicated. And that’s before you begin to try to explain the full nature of the protest to children.
So this teacher has flipped the anger and vehemence on its head and has focused on something larger.
The message looked like this:
“Today is a very important day, today is inauguration day! This means that starting today, we will have a new president. His name is Donald Trump and he will live at the White House. However, what happens at your house is very important too!! You can make the world a better place by starting at your house. These are some things that you can do to make the world a better place.”
The suggestions she gives are lessons we all need.
“Love yourself!” and “Listen to your parents.” “Be responsible.” and “Be kind.” “Believe in yourself.” “Have fun in school.” “Celebrate the differences in others.” Believe in yourself.”
The abstractions are easier to say than to actually do. Yet the message is clear. Love. Listen. Believe. Celebrate. These aren’t the verbs we associate with protest. And the people who embody these ideas are much harder to ignore than the faceless masses marching in the streets.
If there was any subtlety to the message, it was the statement at the end. “And remember: love and kindness rule!!”
Statements like this are dangerous to the people who base their rule on contradictory values. They challenge the status quo. Speaking these truths to tyrants has gotten people crucified.
After the message went viral, the responses started pouring in. It seems like the lessons had more to offer the adult readers of Facebook than the students passing through this second grade teacher’s door.
“All of this. No matter who is POTUS and whether you like him/her or not, raise your children to be good people. Because, one day one of them will be in that house. And wouldn’t the world be an even better place if everyone liked that person.”
“Exactly. It starts at home. Raising compassionate, loving, and kind people will change this world more than any ”leader” could.”
“This teacher has it exactly right. Educators are this country’s biggest asset and contributors. They mold our children and shape our future. Kudos to this fine educator.”