The Real Meaning of Christmas

Our astronaut / veteran / Navy Captain / pen-pal has been ill and hospitalized.  I had to tell the children.  Life can throw you a bunch of curves, and learning how handle adversity is a life lesson.  That’s why I had to tell the children.

Immediately the children wanted to send him a card.  They were worried about him.  They didn’t want him to miss Christmas.  So we made him a big card.  Well, the children made it.  Actually they planned and designed the whole thing.

They told me the words to write on the cover.  Then, instead of drawing pictures on the card, children made individual pictures, cut them out, and glued them to the card.

If you look carefully, there are moons and stars, a Christmas tree, and even outer space. They know Jon well.

The best part was including photos of the children being astronauts in our home made spacecraft.  Of course they’re on their backs with a control panel and a phone to call Houston.

Landon wanted to draw a complete Christmas picture to cheer him up.

Christmas means giving, and making this card was a highlight of the week.  I won’t tell the parents that this meant as much if not more to them than the holiday gifts they made.

Act of giving something to others is an art of flowering your heart.


About Jennie

I have been teaching preschool for over thirty years. This is my passion. I believe that children have a voice, and that is the catalyst to enhance or even change the learning experience. Emergent curriculum opens young minds. It's the little things that happen in the classroom that are most important and exciting. That's what I write about. I am highlighted in the the new edition of Jim Trelease's bestselling book, "The Read-Aloud Handbook" because of my reading to children. My class has designed quilts that hang as permanent displays at both the National Liberty Museum in Philadelphia, and the Fisher House at the Boston VA Hospital.
This entry was posted in Early Education, Expressing words and feelings, Giving, Inspiration, Kindness, military, preschool, Teaching young children and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

81 Responses to The Real Meaning of Christmas

  1. beth says:

    How very sweet, I love this

  2. Ritu says:

    Oh, how precious 💜🎄

  3. Opher says:

    Fabulous Jennie. Kids are a marvel. I bet it meant the world to him.

  4. GP Cox says:

    I copied this image just for you and the children. I hope you all have a magnificent Christmas!!

  5. followmyheartwithme says:

    This is so lovely to read. I’m sorry to hear your friend isn’t well ❤

  6. Darlene says:

    These kids get it. How wonderful. All the best for a fabulous Christmas break. xo

  7. quiall says:

    Compassion is a wonderful trait in anyone! It is nice that the children are learning that young.

  8. Dan Antion says:

    What a touching gesture. I’m sure it made him feel very special. These are good kids, Jennie.

  9. beetleypete says:

    Somehow, illness at Christmas seems worse than at other times. Your children knew best how to send Jon some Christmas cheer.
    Best wishes, Pete.

  10. There was no better gift to give than these well wishes drawn and sent with love, I’m sure these would have cheered him up no end.
    What a wonderful class you have, well done to all. 💚🎅🎄🤗

  11. So sorry to hear of your class’ penpal being hospitalized. Hopefully he is healing well.
    I’m sure the class card will lift his spirits.

  12. carhicks says:

    Absolutely beautiful. Children have such kind hearts, so thankful that you are there to nurture that part. Merry Christmas.

  13. This made me smile. I love the card and the homemade space shuttle! I’m sure Jon will love it too.

  14. John Fioravanti says:

    I am so awed, Jennie, that your classroom is full of wonder!

  15. Good to know they are so caring. Lovely post. Hope John feels better soon.

  16. Beautiful story and quote. ❤ Merry Christmas to all!

  17. A beautiful Card, Jennie. I’m sure the children feel better knowing they could do something to cheer Jon. it is sad our heroes are fading. Thanks for sharing.

  18. Sarah says:

    A beautiful card, a beautiful quote and beautiful post, Jennie! Merry Christmas to you and your sweet kids! 🎄❤

  19. I’m so sorry to hear that Jon isn’t well. I expect that the cards from the children will at least brighten his day a bit. (I like the spacecraft. Very cool.)

  20. Kids have the biggest hearts. It’s so wonderful they have an open space to express it. How wonderful to see those wonders every day.

  21. cindy knoke says:

    I love children, and you for loving them! Merry Christmas.

  22. frenchc1955 says:

    Reblogged this on charles french words reading and writing and commented:
    Here is a wonderful post on Christmas from Jennie, the extraordinary teacher!

  23. lisakunk says:

    This is not only sweet but very clever.

  24. petespringerauthor says:

    Why am I not surprised by this, Jennie? What a perfect way to teach your students about compassion. Your astronaut friend is going to be completely tickled by this. I absolutely love the homemade spacecraft—something these students will never forget.

    • Jennie says:

      I was a little unsure about telling them he was hospitalized, but I should have known right away they would rally to reach out to him. I think Jon will have a big smile on his face when he sees the card. And the spacecraft is awesome. We have to put the timer on so the children all get a turn. Thank you, Pete.

  25. parkermccoy says:

    Aw, you have some really sweet children there. I love the picture of them calling to Houston. There may be a problem but it isn’t with your children. Thay have hearts the size of ten grinches, plus two! Excellent post! Makes me feel better! Thank you so much for sharing!

  26. KINDNESS says:

    Merry Christmas 🎄

  27. I am sorry that Jon is ill. I am sure he will love the Christmas card and pictures. Merry Christmas, Jennie.

  28. dgkaye says:

    God bless the children. Happy holidays Jennie ❤

  29. jilldennison says:

    What a beautiful thing to do!!! This is what the Christmas spirit is about! Merry Christmas to you, my friend!

  30. magarisa says:

    How sweet! This is definitely what Christmas is all about.

  31. The gesture of the pupils is wonderful. You have done a really great job, Jennie! Hope you have a beautiful Christmas/ holiday season. Sorry, i am very late, as always. Michael

  32. willedare says:

    Love this post! I read it out loud to my family as everyone cooks something (soup, cole slaw, apple pie, and more) in the kitchen in my sisters’ farm in upstate NY. A lovely note on which to end 2019…

    • Jennie says:

      Really?! That is such a wonderful thing for you to do. I love every post about your family, and something tells me this put a smile on many faces. Thanks so much, Will. Happy New Year!

  33. abbiosbiston says:

    This is lovely. I think my son’s favourite part of Christmas was actually getting to hang out with his cousins.

  34. Just goes to show why Christmas is for kids…they educate us instead!

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