I’m a small town girl. That’s certainly no secret to any of you. I live 84 miles from a Wal-Mart. There’s one movie theater in Quay County, with one showing per night at 7:00 p.m. Movie changes on Fridays. If you don’t mind seeing Avatar (not in 3-D, of course) on Friday night and then going back for more on Tuesday or Wednesday, it’s not a bad way to live. There’s no sushi here. No malls. We all have a gift closet so that when a birthday comes up, we have something to take to a party.
It’s an interesting way to live, but not a bad way. One of the greatest advantages is that if you have children, they get to go to Logan Municipal School. That’s the reason I moved home. Johanna graduated last year with 15 other seniors. All her teachers knew her name, her habits and her strengths. From what I could tell, they all cared. She didn’t get lost in the education shuffle. Instead she got to be president of the Student Council and the Honor Society, and if she wanted to go out for sports, she didn’t get cut from the team. If the secret to getting kids to graduate is to get them (and their parents) involved, it worked for us.
I could write several posts about Logan Schools, and I will, but last Thursday I saw one of the finest examples of why you should send your elementary kids there. My best pal, Angie Fly Medrow, teaches fine arts to the elementary kids at Logan School. She does a Christmas musical and a Spring Show, and every single elementary student (approximately 100 students) gets on the stage during these shows and sings and dances and has speaking parts.
They smile, they shine – some of them look scared to death, but after an initial moment of confusion or fear, Angie leads them directly into enthusiastic movement and song. They raise the roof. It’s a joy to watch.
This Spring the title was “A Barnyard Moo-sical” – the 2nd graders were pigs, 3rd graders were chickens, 4th were cows, and the 5th graders were goats. The kindergarten and 1st graders started the show with very complicated (but well executed) dance movements and songs. They were all adorable – cute and funny and having a great time.
And afterwards, when their proud parents came to the front of the auditorium to collect their kids, they were all thrilled. “Did you see me? Did you see me?” I heard over and over. Of course they were seen. There were hundreds of cameras in the crowd, one of them mine. I thought you might enjoy seeing a photo or two of some really cute kids.
This is why we live here. Yeah, the air is clean, and there’s always some little old lady giving us a hug as we gather our mail at the post office, and we don’t have to lock our doors, and everyone knows our name and brings a covered dish by if we’re just out of the hospital. Just because we don’t have a movie multiplex in the neighborhood doesn’t mean we’re deprived of the most important things in life.
The reason we live here is so that our kids can go to school at Logan Municipal and be taught with teachers like Angie, teachers who are passionate about making children feel strong and capable and excited about learning. It never fails to bring tears to my eyes when Angie gets up after a show to ask the audience to give her kids one more round of applause. She is usually already crying by that time because she’s so proud of her kids. After weeks of hard work and planning on her part, and weeks of singing and rehearsing on their part, they’ve pulled it together one more time, and they’ve learned that they’re capable of creating something worthwhile. They’ve learned something they’ll never forget.