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Lesson Plans


The First Day of School


From: Janjarreau
Date: Mon Apr 24 2000 - 21:04:54 PDT

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    My daughter sent this to me. I thought you all might enjoy it.
    Janice

    Subject: First Day of School (what a great story)

    The first day of school our professor introduced himself and
    challenged us to get to know someone we didn't already know.
    I stood up to look around when a gentle hand touched my shoulder.
    I turned around to find a wrinkled, little old lady beaming up at me
     with a smile that lit up her entire being.

    She said, "Hi handsome. My name is Rose. I'm eighty-seven years
    old. Can I give you a hug?" I laughed and enthusiastically responded,
    "Of course you may!" and she gave me a giant squeeze.

    "Why are you in college at such a young, innocent age?" I asked. She
    jokingly replied, "I'm here to meet a rich husband, get married, have a
    couple of children, and then retire and travel."

    "No seriously," I asked. I was curious what may have motivated her
     to be taking on this challenge at her age.

    "I always dreamed of having a college education and now I'm getting
    one!" she told me.
    After class we walked to the student union building and shared a
    chocolate milkshake. We became instant friends. Every day for the
    three months we would leave class together and talk nonstop.
    I was always mesmerized listening to this "time machine" as she shared
    her wisdom and experience with me.

    Over the course of the year, Rose became a campus icon and she
    easily made friends wherever she went. She loved to dress up
    and she reveled in the attention bestowed upon her from the other
    students.
    She was living it up.

     At the end of the semester we invited Rose to speak at our football
    banquet. I'll never forget what she taught us. She was introduced and
    stepped up to the podium. As she began to deliver her prepared speech,
    she dropped her three by five cards on the floor.

    Frustrated and a little embarrassed she leaned into the microphone
    and simply said "I'm sorry I'm so jittery. I gave up beer for Lent and
    this whiskey is killing me! I'll never get my speech back in order so let me
    just tell you what I know." As we laughed she cleared her throat and
    began:

    "We do not stop playing because we are old; we grow old because we
    stop playing. There are only four secrets to staying young, being happy,
    and achieving success. "You have to laugh and find humor every day.
    "You've got to have a dream. When you lose your dreams, you die.
    We have so many people walking around who are dead and don't even know
    it!"

    "There is a huge difference between growing older and growing up.
     If you are nineteen years old and lie in bed for one full year and don't
    do one productive thing, you will turn twenty years old. If I am eighty-seven
    years old and stay in bed for a year and never do anything I will turn
    eighty-eight. Anybody can grow older. That doesn't take any talent or
    ability.

    The idea is to grow up by always finding the opportunity in change."
    "Have no regrets. The elderly usually don't have regrets for what we did,
    but rather for things we did not do. The only people who fear death are
    those with regrets."

    She concluded her speech by courageously singing "The Rose." She
    challenged each of us to study the lyrics and live them out in our daily
    lives.

    ~At the years end Rose finished the college degree she had begun all
    those years ago. One week after graduation Rose died peacefully in her
    sleep.

    ~Over two thousand college students attended her funeral in tribute
    to the wonderful woman who taught by example that it's never too late
    to be all you can possibly be.

    ---
    



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