I always love hearing stories about how teacher’s hearts desire more for their students; this is one of those stories. A fourth grade teacher at Cozad Elementary (Cozad, NE), gifted her students each day they were in school for the month of December, with the help of her family and friends. Brooke Soucie, a third-year teacher, said, “Growing up, I was very fortunate when the holidays came around. My parents always made sure that us kids had a nice Christmas with presents under the tree, which we were always excited about. We were definitely spoiled, and still are. Unfortunately, not all of my students are this lucky.”
“So, this year, I have decided that my class is going to decorate stockings and we are going to hang them in the room. Each morning, I want there to be a little something in there for the kids. I remember always being excited to open gifts after Christmas Eve mass, and I want my kids to have that same holiday excitement when they come to school for those 14 days. On the day of our Christmas party, they will each have a couple gifts wrapped under our tree to open.”
She asked for help from her family and friends and received enough donations to give every student in her class a stocking stuffer each day they were in school until Christmas. With each stocking stuffer she gave to the students, she wrote a clever little poem telling about the family that donated.
“And the stockings were hung from the whiteboard with care….” the kids are soooo excited about this!!!!
Meet the TeacherBrooke Soucie devotes a lot of time to her school as she is not only a teacher, but a high school volleyball coach, and 8th grade girls basketball and 8th grade boys basketball coach. Two things she loves is coaching and going to her brothers games back home, as it’s his senior year. She also loves hanging out with family and friends (playing cards, going to the lake, camping, four-wheeling, etc).
Brooke said her favorite thing about being a teacher is simple, but hard to explain. She said, “It’s most definitely the kids. It’s the way that you see their faces light up when they’re learning. The way that they find out when you joke around with them that you’re just a normal person too, not just this teacher that “lives” at school. Being able to joke with them, yet being tough and holding them accountable, because you know and they know that that is what they need-and this is when their trust in you begins to develop. This is when you become that strength and “structure” in some of their lives. When you see a misunderstanding or struggling face light up once they finally “get it.” It’s about watching them get better and improve everyday, but allowing them to have their setbacks, because that’s part of life. For me, it’s about THEM getting better everyday, not about meeting a standard. In my room we believe in and celebrate self-improvements and accomplishments, not where a standard says they should be at a certain point in the year. I know my kids, they have goals, and they know what’s expected. I love the way that they come to trust and love you in such a short amount of time, and you do the same to them. I could go on and on about what I love about teaching, but all in all, its the kids, how each and everyone is so different, unique, and special…yet they all need one thing, which is to be cared for and believed in.”