My friend Judy Murcutt rang and told me she would be bringing me a teddy bear which had the same base as the persona dolls I am making. She said I could take it apart and use the frame to make another doll.
But, as with Felicity, when the bear arrived it was far too beautiful to deconstruct.
So I named her Bearnice and wrote her into the story.
There’s a bear in there!
It is the first day of the new school year and you, dear teacher, are meeting your class for the first time.
And one of the students is a bear – a very much alive bear in a folk art dress, jacket and apron, with an engaging smile and an intelligent sparkle in her eyes, carrying a basket of gingerbread men.
It must be a mistake of some kind. No teacher could be expected to teach a bear! You check with the admissions officer and are told “Oh, that is Bearnice.”
“What am I supposed to do with her?” you ask.
“You need to make sure she learns all that she is expected to learn in your grade this year”
“But she doesn’t speak the same language as we do!”
“You have taught students who have English as a Second Language in the past.”
So now you have a few options.
You could ignore Bearnice altogether – maybe she will just go away. But you wouldn’t do that, would you?
You could assume she must really be like all the other students (maybe she is just dressed up as a bear and when she is comfortable enough in the class she will remove the disguise) But in your heart you know that is not likely to happen. She really is a bear.
You could find out more about bears in general and Bearnice in particular. Learning about her needs, interests, abilities and passions may show you why she was put in your class.
You can learn from her and find out what you can do to help her fulfil her potential and complete whatever mission she has. Maybe she has something to contribute that could save the planet!
And here is the Message contained in the Story.
Some gifted or 2E twice exceptional students seem to be so different from the other students in the class.
You may have difficulty communicating with them for many different reasons.
They may be a long way ahead of the class in some areas and have gaps or weaknesses in other areas.
When you get to know the student personally you may find that they have specific areas of interest and specialized knowledge and a sense of being on a mission.
Spoiler Alert: Bearnice has an amazing wealth of knowledge about bees and a passionate interest in preserving the world’s bee populations!