Sunday, May 24, 2015

One Day Without Shoes-- 2015 Edition

"This one goes out to the heroes. Every day heroes. Yeah, I'm talking to you. You probably are all like, "I'm not a hero. You're talking to the wrong person." And I'm all like, "You're talking to your TV!" So listen up! I think you're a hero and don't even know it yet. Maybe you're like me. You look in the mirror and you don't really see a hero. You look and you just see a regular kid. A really good-looking regular kid. But you? You're a hero. Whether you're a kid or a grown-up. You're way more than you might think you are. You're more than your problems and you're more than your mistakes. Somewhere inside, you're a hero. You might not have a cape or wear underwear outside your clothes (that's probably a good thing). You have everything right now to change the world. EVERYTHING! Heroes are just ordinary people who have done extraordinary things. They inspire other people to be extraordinary."
-- Kid President (For the Heroes)

Kid President is awesome. He and I could say the exact same thing (I could even dress up in a cape and jump off benches in the park) and my students are going to be more receptive to Kid President because he's their age. He's also hysterical and charismatic and I wish he was a student in my class.

His "For the Heroes" video tied in perfectly with TOMS One Day Without Shoes campaign which just so happens to be one of my favorite days of the entire year. TOMS is an American based company that started in 2006, when it's founder, Blake Mycoskie, traveled to Argentina and witnessed, firsthand, the hardships faced by children living without shoes. (You can read all about how TOMS got started and how the company has grown on the TOMS website.) TOMS operates under the motto "One For One"-- for every pair of shoes that is purchased, another pair is donated to a child in need.

I think it's easy for people, especially elementary school students, to think that they're too insignificant to make any real change. TOMS has clearly blown that myth to pieces as they have donated over 35 million pairs of shoes since it's foundation. There are many pieces of wisdom that I hope to bestow upon my students (multiplication, long division, the scientific method), but more importantly that differences among people are what make us special, that our words and actions have lasting impacts on those around us, and that each person is capable to make significant change in the world around them.

And so we went barefoot. We learned about empathy versus sympathy, we laughed along with Kid President, we posted photos on Instagram with the hashtag #withoutshoes, we started a shoe drive to collect gently used shoes for people right here in Rio de Janeiro who need them.

One step at a time, one day at a time, we're making a difference. Because, as Kid President says, heroes are just ordinary people doing extraordinary things.

Click here to read about One Day Without Shoes of years past.
One Day Without Shoes-- 2012 Edition (Rio de Janeiro, Brazil)
One Day Without Shoes-- 2013 Edition (Siguatepeque, Honduras)
One Day Without Shoes-- 2014 Edition (Siguatepeque, Honduras)

1 comment:

  1. I appreciate how you not only have to list the years in which each past post was published, but also the country that you were living in at the time...solid problem to have!