Some students are reflecting on defining moments in their lives as a part of a social studies assignment.
“To understand the importance of history and current events, we need to understand the importance of events in our own lives,” said Earl Weinmann, a seventh grade social studies teacher.
“It doesn’t have to be earth-shaking. Sometimes defining moments are very small.”
When she was first assigned the project, a few different moments quickly popped into Elsa Hoff’s mind.
But ultimately she settled on an interaction that lasted no more than a few seconds, igniting a long journey to discover her inner confidence.
“In elementary school, a kid said that I didn’t look very good in my glasses and then I didn’t wear glasses for a whole year,” said Hoff.
Hoff chose to battle headaches rather than face the criticism of her peers, but as she matured, she realized that maybe looks aren’t everything.
“I learned that people like me for who I am and not what I look like,” said Hoff. “I have more confidence now. I asked my friends and they said they can tell a big difference.”
Through his own defining moment Joe Gatzlaff didn’t learn to be confident, but patient with himself and others.
“My defining moment was the first time I saw my baby sister,” said Gatzlaff, whose sister was adopted when he was 8 years old. “It changed the course of my life.
It was the first time I had to share my parents, and my mom says it helps me to be frustrated with someone but then move on. It helped me find things in common with my friends, too.”
While Gatzlaff can’t necessarily measure how much of an impact having a younger sister has had on his life, Trey Coudret has proof that he has changed.
“I didn’t really like reading before fourth grade,” said Coudret. “But then Mrs. Johnson showed me a book series that helped me enjoy reading again.”