Saturday, April 23, 2011

Ashlawn Elementary, Arlington, Virginia

It’s always an honor for me to speak at a school, and there’s a special hue to it when it’s a school that a child I already know attends, particularly if it’s the child of a best friend.

Sometimes I don’t know that I know anyone at a school I present at until I’ve left the premises. What often happens: that night, a friend from camp or high school or BBYO (the Jewish youth group I belonged to in high school) e-mails me “I didn’t know you were going to speak at my son/daughter’s school!” Likewise, I didn’t know that your son/daughter was going to be at my school!

However, when speaking at Ashlawn Elementary in Arlington, Virginia on 4/11/11, I did know in advance that the audience would include a young man I know, and I playfully took advantage of it (with advanced permission from his mom). I incorporated this third grader into my PowerPoint on not one but three slides. He laughed and his classmates applauded. I’m told he loved this but I still can’t help but feel that—even though his parents assured me otherwise—he might’ve been a little embarrassed. In any case, I do believe his dominant feeling was positive.

Cherry shell on the soft-serve cone: Ashlawn went up, up, and away in selling my books, including the display they set up for them.

Ashlawn was one of three dynamic Arlington schools I spoke at in a two-day period, the other two being Barrett and Patrick Henry. Thank you to all!

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