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A Super Hero Is Born

Writing class: today’s topic: Create Your Own Super Hero. The kids were brainstorming. One young lady says, “But where did you get your magic powers, George?” She, apparently took seriously my suggestion that the magic be explained. “You can’t just suddenly have a magic power from nowhere.”

“Sure I can, Jasmine,” George answers. “Like Mask, I’ll just find something that makes me special.”

“Like what?” Jasmine demands.

George jumps out of his seat and yells, “My pencil!” He waves his green mechanical pencil at the brand new bulletin board I had just finished. It fell from the wall. My students fell from their chairs laughing.

George yelled, “I am magic!”

I picked up my scissors and opened and closed them slowly. “George,” I spoke very softly. “Bring your fingers here.”

George sat on his hands. I stared at him. He reached out, grabbed his pencil and offered it to me. “It was the pencil!” He said, “Take it!” Then he tossed it at my feet and tucked his hand away.

“Tell you what:” I say, then place the pencil on George’s desk. “You put that bulletin board back up on the wall and we’ll forget this whole thing ever happened.”

George, still sitting on his hands stares at his pencil. Finally, slowly, he answers, “Ooookay, …. but I think I’m gonna need a lot of tape.”

I absolutely love teaching 5th grade. And I love it that the kids are old enough to know when to take me seriously and when to play. I knew that bulletin board needed hot glue. I should have done it right the first time.

Quilly is the pseudonym of Charlene L. Amsden, who lives on The Big Island in Hawaii. When she is not hanging out with Amoeba, she is likely teaching or sewing. Or she could be cooking, taking photographs, or even writing. But if she's not doing any of that, she's probably on Facebook or tinkering with her blog.


  1. kids are funny-one of the other drivers had a little girl get on his bus and hand him two quarters. He asked her where the rest of the 75 cents was and she told him, “Mommy said, ‘fifty cents for you and a quarter for me for ice cream!'” Dean said he couldn’t make her cough up the rest even though he knew it was in her pocket and that her mom had never said any such thing. He chipped in the 25 cents.
    I see you visited me today- good to see you again!

  2. Hi QD,

    Actually, I dropped by earlier to read your new post (and loved it) but didn’t leave a comment. I’m bogged down with one of those deadlines. We have a faculty show every year at LCC and this year’s theme is “Art as Activism.” Been stewing over it for days. working on a visual altar to Rachel Carson. I’ll drop an e-mail out to the world when I get it done. Deadline is Friday and I’ve barely begun. Yikes. Keep ’em comin.’ Gotta love those kids.

  3. children are precious. children are beyond wonderful…he sounds beautiful. tell him i agree with him, a pencil could be super power. the mighty written word is a force to be used for good or evil.

    sorry i’ve missed so many of your post.

    i’m happy you won the contest.

    your co-worker got you good, πŸ˜‰ i love the way you manage to have fun everywhere you are. you have a happy heart. thank you for sharing it with all of us.

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