Las Vegas, Nevada—
We had a teacher at our school pass away in October. His wife is a dean at our school too, so the entire campus really rallied around them. The evening after all the students learned of his untimely passing I was invited by friends to go see the new movie “Christmas jars” in the theater in my town. I cried through most of it even though I already knew the story having read the book several years ago. I left the theater wanting to participate in this beautiful tradition this Christmas. So I found a small jar and placed it on my counter. On the way to school the next day I had a quick thought to take it into my classroom and invite my students to participate. So, I grabbed the jar, gave a brief intro to the story to each of my classes, and invited them to join me in helping fill this jar for this Dean who would have one of the hardest holidays of her life this year. By the end of the second day our jar was overflowing. I traded it out for the largest pickle jar I could find and we spent the next 3 weeks until Christmas break dumping coins and bills into it. During semester exams all of my students wrote an anonymous card of well wishes to her and her family. Then we caroled in the front of the office while we secretly delivered the jar, notes, and copy of the book to her office in the back. It was easily one of the most beautiful Christmas moments of my life. I’m so proud of my teenage students who were so generous and thoughtful! Thank you for beginning such a beautiful tradition.