Our annual open house always brings out my creative side. This year I had my students create a flag that represents themselves.
This idea came to me late one night, perhaps it was early morning, when I remembered the flag I created with the 5th grade class I student taught in. We all collaborated on the design and we all helped create the flag for Room 18. On Spring Break, I even took the flag to Santa Cruz Island and planted it on the beach at Scorpion Anchorage, claiming the island for Room 18.
Do you have a flag? Well Room 18 does and we claim Santa Cruz Island in the name of Murphytonia.
I had 26 completed student flags hanging from the ceiling but there was one thing missing: my flag!
And now for a tour of my flag:
I wanted my flag to be shaped differently from the common rectangular shape so I rounded the fly end off to resemble a red-tailed hawk tail which is one of the most common raptors in North America and is one of my “spark birds”, that is a bird that first got you hooked on birds and birding.
I created a circular emblem to anchor the design. In the emblem is a peregrine falcon looking off to the fly end. The peregrine is one of my favorite raptors and emblamatic of nature’s resiliency, with a little help from enlightened humans. This is a bird that I frequently see, perched on a power tower on my way home from work.
The field in the upper left features one of my favorite quotes about education: “Education is not the filling of a pail, but the lighting of a fire. ” This Yeats quote is always displayed in my room.
The upper right field is about my love for the Word’s Game, which is the true football that is played the world over. There are two quotes featured. The first is by German coach Sepp Herberger, “The ball is round. The game lasts 90 minutes. This much is fact. Everything else is theory.” The second is from my favorite player, Zinedine Zidane who said he would miss “Le Carre Vert (the green of the grass) when he retires.
Fozie de Bear represents many things: the lifeskill of Sense of Humor, native Californians (the grizzly bear), bow tie (traditions and science), and how students should move in the halls (waka, waka, waka).
The last field is a book with the words “Live Learn (Repeat)” on it. It means that I’m a life long learner and I love reading. I have included a quote from one of my favorite poets, Mary Oliver. It is the last two lines of “The Summers Day” as well as important question for my students, “Tell me, what is it you plan to do/ with your one wild and precious life?”
And finally the quote, “Do you have a flag?” comes from the Eddie Izzard show Dressed to Kill.