24 Feb Love, Love, Love
Now, more than ever in my life, I find myself searching for a way to make a difference. I think about the state of the world and the many opportunities to respond. I choose to focus on the things that I can control and the principles that feel the most meaningful.
Thankfully, every day, I am transported into my wonderful second family. My classroom full of four and five year-olds. Here I feel, perhaps, I can make a difference.
Even though I sometimes struggle, I try to remember my intentions daily and find the moments where love can be felt and given. I try to celebrate those moments and associate uniqueness with beauty and color. I want to empower my students to understand that they have the power to create love and experience it.
On Valentine’s Day my class took inspiration from an artist/photographer named JGoldcrown who layers hearts on top of hearts to create a “Love Wall” and together, we created a love wall of our own. First, we talked about the shape of a heart. Some described its curves and straight lines. Others declared that it was simply too difficult to draw. To that, a few children answered, “I’ll help you.” “Here like this.” Moments later the creating began. Layering hearts, upon hearts, upon hearts. We noticed the differences in our drawings , the different colors used, the variations in heart shapes and sizes. Then the magic. They began to praise how beautiful each other’s heart was. No matter the shape, size or color. The more hearts we added, the more spectacularly beautiful the heart wall became. After hundreds of hearts were added, they realized, “If we continue this way, we can never run out of room.” Someone shouted, “There can never be too many hearts!”
It wasn’t until that moment that I was able to share, “And there can’t be too much love. Here or anywhere!”
Each day, as I make my trek into work, I think of our love wall. Of our appreciation for one another and the beauty of our work together. I am reminded that in that instant, in our innocent carefree classroom, we all accepted that love can be given, received, layered, and infinite.
I hope they continue to add hearts to the world so that it may overflow with kindness. Because there can never be enough love!
Bari Schwartz has been a teacher at Montclare Children’s School since 2004! With her MA in Education from New York University, Bari is a dedicated and passionate educator and a valued member of our community.