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December 18, 2012

A Tribute to Sandy Hook Elementary School Students and Staff

Twas’ 11 days before Christmas, around 9:38,
When 20 beautiful children stormed through heaven’s gate.

Their smiles were contagious, their laughter filled the air,

They could hardly believe all the beauty they saw there!

They were filled with such joy, they didn’t know what to say.

They remembered nothing of what had happened earlier that day.

“Where are we?” asked a little girl, as quiet as a mouse. 

“This is heaven.” declared a small boy. “We’re spending Christmas at God’s house.”

When what to their wondering eyes did appear, 

But Jesus, their savior, the children gathered near.

He looked at them and smiled, and they smiled just the same. 

Then He opened His arms and He called them by name.

And in that moment was joy, that only heaven can bring!

Those children all flew into the arms of their King!

And as they lingered in the warmth of His embrace, 

One small girl turned and looked at Jesus’ face.

And as if He could read all the questions she had,

 He gently whispered to her, “I’ll take care of mom and dad.”

Then He looked down on earth at the world far below,

He saw all of the hurt, the sorrow, and woe.

Then He closed His eyes and He outstretched His hand,

“Let My power and presence re-enter this land!”

“May this country be delivered from the hands of fools!” 

“I’m taking back my nation. I’m taking back my schools!”

Then He and the children stood up without a sound. 

“Come now my children, let me show you around.”

Excitement filled the space, some skipped and some ran,

All displaying enthusiasm that only a small child can.

And I heard Him proclaim as He walked out of sight, 

“In the midst of this darkness, I AM STILL THE LIGHT.”

Written by Cameo Smith of Mt. Wolf, PA.

 This beautiful poem and drawing was forwarded to me by my wonderful Mother-in-Law, Barbara Butkus.  I have no idea who the author, Cameo Smith is, or how to contact him, but I am assuming that he meant this beautiful message to be shared.

The tragic events of the past week have left me shaken and a bit uneasy for the future of the children and teachers in our schools all over the nation.  My heart is broken for the families that have had the unthinkable happen to them, and my prayers are with you every day as you walk the long road to healing.  May God be with you and comfort you every step of the way.

 Below are links and resources that were forwarded to me in an email by the California Kindergarten Association.  I thought that they might be helpful to some of you.

Direct contributions may be sent to:
Sandy Hook School Support Fund
C/O Newtown Savings Bank
39 Main Street, Newtown CT 06470

Newtown Youth and Family Services, a nonprofit mental health clinic, that provides emergency counseling for families.  All donations made to the organization will benefit those affected.

Newtown Parent Connection, a nonprofit that addresses issues of substance abuse and offers bereavement group counseling.

(The following was printed in the December 15th issue of the Sacramento Bee.)

Here are some online sites by educators that offer advice and support that may be helpful to discuss the shooting with children.
Responding to Tragedy:  Information from Sacramento City
Talking to Your Kids About Violence:  Tips from the National Association of School Psychologists.
Resources for coping with tragedy.
Coping with School

Please join me next week as I return to my normal posts with educational ideas for Pre-K, Kindergarten, and First Grade teachers.  Thank you!