By Victoria John
Middle School teacher, Lakehill Preparatory School
The power of snow to delight should never be underestimated. The magic of its rhythmic, almost musical quality inspires adventure and mystery. I admit our recent snowfall awakened my own inner child, as I opened my window blinds anticipating the smiles of my seventh grade Latin students. As they settled in their seats, an unusual silence prevailed. I knew they were getting ready to ask, “Can we go out and play in the snow?”
Their eager, open mouths welcomed the soft coldness of the snowflakes, as baby birds awaiting their mamma’s feeding. In their own rhythm several spread their wings to create snow angels in the faint accumulation. Others, slipping and falling, raced to be the first to gather the cold wetness on the bleachers. I watched the nearby eighth graders frolic like kindergartners, without a care in the world. One remarked, “It is pretty fun.” Snow is a great equalizer of children.
My students were just kids playing, frantically capturing every moment of the white magic falling from the sky. They were children totally engaged in an age-old entertainment that requires no internet, no texting, no headphones – no thoughts of grabbing cell phones between classes to check messages. The simplicity of snow, with all its enchanting wonderment, inspires creative play and breaks down social barriers.
“Snow, Snow, Snow, Snow…,” the opening words in four-part harmony to Irving Berlin’s timeless classic “White Christmas,” echoed through my mind as I marveled at the expressions on their faces. In the swirling haze, I heard, “Take a picture of us!” The photo froze their voices and uninhibited joy as it blended individual personalities in a concert of embraces and laughter. Creativity writer Julia Cameron said, “The quality of life is in proportion, always, to the capacity for delight.” In the remaining last minutes my students stretched out their squeals of delight as they ran headlong, sliding into one another, enveloped in the snowy blanket.
Being with them in that moment was a priceless gift of immeasurable delight.