Education alumni show passion for early learning

The spread of children's literature did much to brighten the room l Photo by Riley Strong

Some of the weekend’s homecoming festivities may have been overshadowed by the opening of The Logos, but the education department chose to take the literary mindset and use it to their advantage. The department held their own homecoming event on a much smaller scale. The intimate setting lent itself well to their focus on children’s literature.

Alumni of the program were invited to attended Saturday morning, and those who accepted were welcomed into what might have normally been a typical classroom. The space was transformed by appropriate decor. On display were some of the faculty’s favorite children’s books. Most notable were selections from Ken Newman’s collections: a great number of Patricia Polacco books, several renditions of the classic Cinderella tale and a selection of stories that celebrate diversity.

Dottie Myatt, assistant dean for teacher education, gave insight on the event and its purpose.

“We’ve asked them to come and bring a book that they have used in their teaching and to share with us how they used that book in their teaching, to teach a certain concept or skill,” she said “And then, if they want to donate the book, we’re taking donations and we’ll give them to a school library that needs them.”

Among those contributed were The Velveteen Rabbit, How Much is a Million?, The Legend of Spookly the Square Pumpkin, and Oh, the Places You’ll Go.

Tom Rosenbrough speaks on one of his favorite examples of children's literature, The Pigeon Wants a Puppy! by Mo Willems l Photo by Riley Strong
Tom Rosenbrough speaks on one of his favorite examples of children’s literature, The Pigeon Wants a Puppy! by Mo Willems l Photo by Riley Strong

Tom Rosebrough, executive dean of the College of Education and Human Studies had a few words to say about his own conviction to teach that represented well the caring the entire department has for children.

“One of the things that we celebrate at Union University is that God is the author of all knowledge. Everything that we have the privilege of learning in this world is a gift from God,” he said. “The way that we perceive who we’re teaching makes all the difference and so, that’s the starting point. When it comes to talking about children’s literature, as Tom Rosenbrough speaks on one of his favorite examples of children’s literature, The Pigeon Wants a Puppy! by Mo Willems you might expect, it’s very special to me.”

Listening to the way attendees spoke of the literature they had brought was especially striking. There was something incredibly genuine about each person’s love. Presenters all displayed an inspiring passion for teaching and for sharing experiences with children through stories. It is obvious that these people are in the career that God has called them to.

Image courtesy of Riley Strong|Cardinal & Cream
About Riley Strong 5 Articles
Riley Strong is a DMC major/ Graphic Art minor and is a proud member of Union's class of 2019. She is formally known as a freelancer, but she really just likes writing in her spare time. Legend tells that she survives solely on a diet of ramen noodles and irony.