Beasley students in 1st Grade have been learning about each other through their “Me I Am” presentations. They talk about themselves, answer questions and discover connections with classmates. Through it all, they come to realize that we can all be friends even if we don’t have things in common.
This week, though, they were surprised to have a guest presenter. Head of School Mr. Jay Rainey dropped by a First Grade classroom to give his own “Me I Am” presentation to Ms. Veronica Wachter and Ms. Robin Campbell’s students, complete with a poster board of photos and a map that he created himself.
Mr. Rainey introduced himself (and his mom, a retired first grade teacher who happened to be visiting) and then took students on a tour of the eastern United States to all the places he’s lived, worked and studied. He shared photos of himself and his family, including a childhood photo from a swim competition that he says shows he once had hair. Then he opened the floor for questions.
The 1st Graders were particularly interested in the photo with Mr. Rainey’s children, taken at the World Chess Hall of Fame here in St. Louis, where many of them have visited. They also wanted to talk about Silas, the Raineys’ bulldog, and connections they have to some of the places Mr. Rainey has lived. Near the end, Ms. Wachter encouraged the students to share some differences they have with Mr. Rainey, and discuss how they can be friends anyway. One student said, “You have a dog and I have a cat, but we can still be friends!” Mr. Rainey agreed, and pointed out that even though dogs and cats are different, they still have something in common: they’re pets!
It was easy to see that our 1st Graders all feel like they have a new friend in Mr. Rainey.