"How beautiful a day can be when kindness touches it." (George Elliston)

Monday, May 23, 2011

Superhero Spell of Friendship

The Superheroes needed to take a break from missions the last couple weeks as they prepared for their school's presentation night and participated in some fun field trips.  Although the Superheroes were not out in physical force, they managed to influence those around them still.  Here is a story one of the teachers created to help resolve a debate between herself and one of the children.

In another classroom within the school, a debate has been occurring between a student (four years old) and a teacher.  The child, who believes with all her heart she is a unicorn, created an animal.  This animal was a pegacorn, a mix between a unicorn and a pegasus.  The debate was that a pegacorn and a dragon could not be friends.  It was well known that the dragon would come after the pegacorn, and the pegacorn would perform donkey kicks to fend off the dragon.  But, the teacher was sure that (with help) the pegacorn and dragon could learn to be friends.  The child disagreed.  It should be noted the child was a fan of the superheroes and I believe has her own superhero cape.  Well, in a last, very well thought out, attempt to prove these two could be friends, the teacher created a picture and story for the child.  

Thanks Allison, for using the superhero way to help spread your message of friendship.

The Superheroes will be going on their last school year missions in the next week.  But the superhero work does not end with the last day of school.  We will be working with Imagine Missoula, a local organization, to provide a few opportunities over the summer for anyone (young or old) who would like to be a superhero to join in on a mission.  Our first joint mission is coming up.  A nice elder woman needs help painting her fence, and has accepted the superhero offer of help.  Any child who participates will be able to have their picture taken in a cape.  This is the way it will work.  Because this is our first attempt at joining these superhero preschoolers with Imagine Missoula's superheroes who work during the day,  we are putting out two dates - Wednesday June 1st or Tuesday June 7th (4pm both days).  If you are able and willing to join this momentous mission, email me through the superhero email address telling me which day you can help.  We will choose the date in which we are able to get an ample number of volunteers, both young and old.  Hope to see you there!

Monday, May 9, 2011

Bike Walk Bus Week Fun

The Superheroes of Kindness were having quite a bit of fun during bike walk bus week (two superheroes rode the bus with me one day and one rode his scoot bike with me another day - all the way to school!)  We decided it was definitely necessary to do a Bike Walk Bus Week Superhero mission.  This fine day we were joined by Superhero supporter and friend, Ed.  So excited you joined us, Ed!

Note the flower sticking out of the bicycle handle :)
For this mission, we wanted to celebrate people who biked, walked or bussed.  This was a very special mission in that we were going to perform our first really random act of kindness, one in which we were not going to see the recipient and were going to leave our act of kindness out there for someone to receive.  We spent Wednesday making butterflies out of some really sparkly wallpaper samples.  On the butterflies we attached notes, making sure any random recipients would know what it is they were being left and why.  On Friday, the Superheroes and their special guest visited Bitterroot Floral where we each picked out a single stem flower.  Then we set off down Higgins to give our flowers to passer-byers.

Of course, we ran into some 'friends' along the way.  A couple of the children saw a police officer on a motorbike.  After some brief discussion distinguishing between a 'bike' and a 'motorbike', we decided to give the officer a butterfly (well, actually more like six butterflies) for helping to keep our streets safe.  As a thank you, the police officer let the children take turns sitting on his motorbike.

Then of course, we ran into some folks eating on the Hip Strip.  The children gave one fellow a butterfly, and he chatted the children up.  He complimented the craftmanship of their work (great cutting skills) and talked capes.  Definitely exciting in our book.

Finding the best spot to put a butterfly.
The random part of the mission was wonderful!  The children were excited to leave butterflies  for someone to find.  In fact, it was quite a bit of fun trying to wrap the butterflies around bike handles, in tires, kind of anywhere on the bikes.  Some of us wanted to leave the broken stems from our flowers (after all, the stems are pretty special parts of the flowers, too.)  And contrary to what I had planned for, each child was able to give up their special flower to leave or give to someone they do not know.  Although we frequent the flower shop, this was the first time we had to give up a single stem we had picked out and held.  (We have only given them away as bunches for special occasions like birthdays, not singly and just for fun).   This was also the first time we offered something special we really wanted for ourselves to help make someone else's day.  And I tell you, my spirit was very much renewed this mission.  These children really showed me the importance of watering the seeds of kindness.  I have not stopped smiling since.  I can only imagine how a recipient of one of the flowers or butterflies must be feeling right now.

Thank you Superheroes for helping celebrate alternative transportation, and for refreshing your teacher's spirit!

Butterfly House Beauty

Presenting Jen with the jar of money

While the Crazy Loving Cows (a three-year-old class at the Community School) were learning about the rain forests, they invited Jen from the Missoula Butterfly House to come into their classroom and share information about insects found in the rain forest.  She brought in hissing Madagascar cockroaches, Milton the millipede, and a blue morpho-butterfly.  The children were so excited and interested in the insects that they wanted to do something to help get the Butterfly House started.  (It will officially open in 2012).  

Jen thanking the students.
The children brought in pennies from home (over 700!) and held a bake sale at school.  Talk about realizing you are never too small to make a difference in your community - they made over $100 in two days from their bake sale!  When they combined the penny drive and the bake sale, they raised $139 that they were able to donate to the Missoula Butterfly House.  The children were delighted to be able to give Jen the huge jar of money, and they had the added bonus of feeling great about helping get the Butterfly House off to a good start so that other children can enjoy the insects too.  

Friends of the Butterfly House stickers - yeah!
Wow, the power of a three year old is magnificent.  Thank you Crazy Loving Cows for your help!