I celebrate pencils too! Today I am at my first class ever that deals with blogging. We began by previewing various blogs. I found A Day in the Life blog informative. Leigh Ann Eck celebrated pencils and shared a story from a presentation from Ruth Ayres in her blog. This blog touched my soul because I strive to build relationships and safe communities with my students in my classes. I am definitely from the "give them a pencil camp"! Many feel that the students need to be responsible by bringing their personal materials to class, but I want to assist my students by helping them deconstruct the barriers that keep them from writing, and sometimes the deconstructing can be as simple as sharing a pencil and a smile. I am anxious to try the colored pencil in a jar behavior activity. I found the statement below meaningful and applicable to building relationships and communities. "If we can recognize these behaviors, we can change our reactions. When we change our reactions, we give them hope."