Expecting every child in a class to respond to the same stimuli, develop at the same rate and achieve the same targets is like casting a handful of mixed seeds upon the soil and expecting them all to flourish.
Just as each seed has its own specific requirements of soil type, temperature, sunlight and water, so too does each child have its own needs, interests and learning requirements.
Differentiation is no less important in the classroom than it is the garden and tending to the learning and development needs of each child requires understanding of individual needs, appreciation of learning styles and a program that includes both a nurturing and expectation of individual growth with a sprinkling of well-timed instruction, support and attentive praise.
This week Charli Mills at Carrot Ranch Communications posted a flash fiction prompt that immediately conjured up an image of a classroom as a well-tended garden in which each individual is appreciated for its own value and receives whatever is appropriate to foster its development.
Charli’s challenge is to In 99 words (no more, no less) write a story that includes fruit.
Here is my response about a little tree whose time has come:
A fruitful harvest
Little Tree stood alone at the edge of the orchard thinking, “What’s wrong with me?”
The other trees grew tall. Their branches, laden with bright green leaves and sweet-scented blossoms, seemed to whisper mockingly.
The sun shone. Rains watered the soil.
Their blossoms turned to fruit, a plentiful harvest.
Confused and dejected, Little Tree avoided the celebratory festival.
Then all grew quiet. The bigger trees rested, preparing for the next season.
Suddenly an insect orchestra and an unfamiliar fragrance startled Little Tree.
“What’s up?” it asked.
“You!” they buzzed relishing the richness of its golden blooms.
Thank you for reading. I appreciate your feedback. Please share your thoughts about any aspect of this article or flash fiction piece.
Featured image: rjp, Bird seed https://www.flickr.com/photos/zimpenfish/437991798/