Until this morning I was not familiar with Shelby Bjerke. She is a 5th Grade student at Lincoln Elementary School here in Bemidji, MN. As I listened to the brave students who stood up to share a few words with their fellow classmates and their families (I mean public speaking is hard, but in 5th grade! wow!) Shelby’s speech stood out. Read and see what I mean:
Lincoln School, to some people it’s just a name, a school, with no emotion towards it’s real virtue. But to the students who go here and to the adults who work along side them it’s a place filled to the brim with love, friendship, happiness, laughter, and kindness shining through like sunlight from Lincoln’s many windows.
To the children who will come here next year Lincoln’s an exciting school filled with kids to befriend, to the kindergartners it’s classrooms filled so full with toys, crayons, and new friendships they don’t know where to step!
For the first graders it’s learning to read and write and add and subtract, it’s having their name put on a special piece of paper when they lose a tooth.
To the second graders it’s having their name on a wall [for reading progress], a ride in a limousine and a dilly bar, it’s AVE classes, and A.R. Ceremonies [Accelerated Reading].
For Third graders it’s MCA Tests, and funny teachers, it’s being in another class from your best friend which drives you CRAZY, it’s building rockets, and planting trees.
To the Fourth Graders it’s Chorus, and fun trips, it’s track and field, and teachers with wit, it’s fear of the next year, and what’s to come, and relief that it’s not quite there yet.
For the Fifth Graders it’s letting go inch by inch, of the school that took us and changed us bit by bit, and became such a part of our lives that we can’t begin to imagine life without Lincoln School.
But, there is also the knowledge that today when we walk out those doors and can no longer truthfully call ourselves Lincoln students, we can march right back in and say, “I am a Lincoln Laker and always will be” with all the truth in the world, because:
Lincoln isn’t just a school; it’s a lifestyle.
Lincoln isn’t just a school; it’s a community.
Lincoln isn’t just a school; it’s a home.