Tag Archives: essay

The Thumbprint of a Teacher: We Leave Our Mark


ImageAs our judges read each poem and look at each piece of art, it is amazing what these students create.  Many of the teachers become unmet friends.  Where as many class assignments are generic in nature, many pieces of art and poetry have a clear thumbprint from that teacher’s style. 

Yesterday, I was judging art and without seeing the school or the teacher’s name, I could identify both by the art that was submitted. It was a school in Texas, whose students each do a very original painting; however, the style is so refreshing and unique that it is very identifiable.  The goal of our publication is not to hit percentages, but to publish good art.  For this teacher, all 55 of her students, covering grades 1-8, were accepted to be published.  Each piece was several grade levels above where they would normally be. 

For poetry, we have many schools that I can identify the teacher and the school by the students’ work.  One such school, in California, does not follow the normal conventions of formula poems where the students follow a pattern, but they each create original thought and style.   This school has had many Top Ten Winners over the years.  Another school in Northern Idaho is based on the classics and their entries are identified by the use of the old style pen that takes an ink cartridge.

Each thumbprint that a teacher creates through their students’ work makes us feel like we are meeting and judging the work of old friends.  Would we know them on the street?  No. But the quality of their students’ work makes them very well-known in our office.

Each year I have students who sit on the back row who I thought were just another student in the class.  I am a bit surprised when these students come forth asking for a letter of recommendation for graduate school.  Of all their teachers, I stood out.  I was not aware of my influence, but it was there. For every teacher, your thumbprint on your students may not be obvious, but we all influence in ways that are not always visible.  Keep up the good work.

For more information about our national art contests, go to www.CelebratingArt.com.

Sweepstakes Time!



Creative Communication (host of national poetry contests for students in grades K-12) and CelebratingArt.com (host of national art contests for students in grades K-12) are hosting a national sweepstakes!

There will be two winners; one winner over 18 years of age will receive two free flights to ANYWHERE in the United States, and one winner 18 years or younger will receive a free Amazon Kindle. Here are the rules:

To make an entry, check out the following links to “like” us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.  Each will get you one entry (remember, we have a Twitter and Facebook page for both Creative Communication AND CelebratingArt.com – that’s a total of four entries!)  Each time one of your friends on Facebook “likes” us from your referral you will receive two bonus entries.  If you tweet out our contest link you will receive three bonus entries.  Every time someone follows us on Twitter from one of your tweets you will receive two bonus entries.  The more entries you have, the more likely is your chance to win.  The contest runs until April 2, 2012.  We will then have a drawing to pick the winners.  Every day you can submit a new entry for each Facebook profile – that’s a lot of entries!  Don’t miss out on your chance to win.

Twitter:   https://woobox.com/2bmyws
Facebook:  https://woobox.com/ity9o2

Creative Communication:
Twitter:  https://woobox.com/wc6x3z
Facebook:  https://woobox.com/mby6i4

Here’s a breakdown of ways you can get entries into the contest:

“Like” our Creative Communication page — 1 entry
“Like” our CelebratingArt page — 1 entry
Have a friend “like” our Creative Communication page from your referral —2 entries
Have a friend “like” our CelebratingArt page from your referral —2 entries

Follow our Creative Communication page — 1 entry
Follow our CelebratingArt page — 1 entry
Send a tweet to your friends with the link to the sweepstakes page — 3  entries
Each friend that follows us from your tweet — 2 entries

Now get out there and enter to win big!

We Do Make a Difference


For today’s blog I want to share an email I received from a teacher in Colorado.

“I wanted to thank you for the note and allowing me to still be a part of the fall contest with my kiddos!  I wanted to tell you that the mom of one of my boys contacted me after he received the letter of notification for his piece.  They received it the exact same day that she was called to go to the school and pick him up because he was suspended for an incident involving anger issues.
When they got home with the paperwork for the suspension, they also got the paperwork for the contest.  She said it was ironic that the two were from the same boy.  I told her that perhaps that was God’s way of tempering the blow of the suspension, encouraging him, and helping him to see that he was not a total failure as that was always the thought pattern he seemed to fall into…
So when I looked a few days ago and he still had not given his permission, I was a bit concerned.  I thought I would give Mom a week or so and then call her and “remind” her about it – just in case… But I looked today and she gave permission – so I was relieved!  He really deserves to have this accomplishment under his belt and in his future resume!!  
Sorry to take up so much of your morning, but I am so thankful for organizations like yours who have such an impact on students (and families….and teachers!) and wanted you to know just one of the stories (I am sure there are hundreds more out there!) behind the contest end that you see.  You really do make a HUGE difference in the lives of those you touch!
Thanks again and God bless you and all who work at Creative Communication!”
—Julie  J