Marie Hablitzel, my mother and co-author, passed away in February (2007). Everyone who knew her acknowledged her special way with children. It shone through in children’s artwork.
In March, I returned home and was taking care of errands when I noticed a wall near the exit of the grocery store covered with cute children’s drawings of octopi. On my way out, I stopped to have a closer look, and realized, “Hey, that’s Mom’s octopus lesson from Book 6!” It picked up my spirits. Seeing those drawings would have been enough for me, but when I got to the bank, there were children’s colorful drawings of sunflowers in the foyer, a lesson from Book 3. Just a few blocks from the bank, the appliance store window was filled with drawings of the Gingerbread Boy, a lesson from Book 1. It was Youth Art Month and the retailers were displaying local school children’s artwork. The bank clerk had another explanation—the drawings were little angels all over town.
One of my brothers noted that the Draw Write Now series is a tribute to our mother’s many years in the classroom. I must add that when I see a child’s drawing, it’s a tribute to my mother and all the other teachers who put their heart and soul into helping children learn. I am forever thankful that her lessons have been shared with so many children, teachers and parents.
“Drawing a picture together gave everyone a chance to begin the day with a successful project. A new student, a child with weak reading skills, or one who didn’t understand English could follow along with me. Everyone could draw and write the short sentences.”