May 16, 2012

Thanking a Teacher and Flying a Banner

Ruth Ann Siegler welcomes former student Bethany Hauser Clawson home from Afghanistan

People come and go throughout our lives, but I find that teachers have a special place in mine.  I'm dedicating this post to Ruth Ann Siegler, a wonderful art teacher who is retiring from Blue Ash Elementary School here in southwest Ohio after 36(?) years of working with children.

Ruth Ann encourages every child to discover his/her innate creativity, especially those kids who aren't "artistic" in the traditional sense.  More important, she recognizes that every one of her students is a special small person whose soul she nurtures.  She certainly helped me gain perspective on one of my kids (now a music teacher ) who as a third grader broke nearly every rule of social networking there was!

As I wrote Elizabeth I: The People's Queen and Theodore Roosevelt for Kids, Ruth Ann was a terrific source for activities.  When I wanted to create a banner-making activity for Elizabeth, Ruth Ann invited me to her art room and showed me how to make one with simple materials --muslin, tissue paper, butcher paper, and glue -- for a textured, colorful result.  I can guarantee that watching a child make one of these won't be'll find yourself working on one as well. It's all in the fun of making art.

For all you've done for me and others, Ruth Ann, this post is for YOU!


  1. I always love a salute to a good teacher. They receive so little praise for the life-changing work they do.

  2. What a great way to honor a teacher!