I love heartfelt stories, especially if it involves teachers trying to make a difference when it comes to their students. Which is exactly what Shannon Grimm did to cheer up one of her kindergartners. Grimm decided to cut her hair last month after her student, Priscilla Perez, was constantly being teased by classmates for having short hair. This prompted the 5-year-old to always wear hats to cover up her new hair-do, feeling self-conscious of the way she looked.
Grimm, a kindergarten teacher at Meador Elementary school in Willis Texas, said the students began telling Perez she looked like a boy and “had boy’s hair.” The mother of three wanted to help Priscilla and turn her tears into a “teachable moment for her class”, which is why she decided to cut her hair to match Priscilla’s to show students that hair wasn’t a reason to be bullied about.
The teacher stated that when she arrived at school after her winter break, students kept asking her questions and telling her she also looked like a boy. She quickly explained to them that it didn’t matter how someone looked on the outside, rather it was the inside that counted.
“They asked a lot of questions as 5-year-olds will. Some of them were like, ‘I love it, it looks so pretty.’ Others said, ‘You look like a boy’ and I said, ‘No I look beautiful. Don’t I look beautiful?’ I told Priscilla that I did it for her and I wanted to show her that it didn’t matter if you had longer hair or shorter hair. It matters what’s inside and that she’s a caring, silly girl.”
Grimm noticed how the children quickly changed the way they responded to her and Priscilla’s matching haircuts and decided to acknowledge it even more by buying matching bows for both of them.
For Priscilla’s bravery, Grimm nominated the 5-year-old for the district student of the month award, after facing a “difficult time”. In a surprise twist, Priscilla presented her teacher with a medal for being a hero!
This is exactly what teachers should do whenever they hear that a student is being bullied. Try to fix a situation by committing to the problem and taking control over it to avoid anything serious from happening. There are so many stories out there that unfortunately don’t have a happy ending like this, and it’s sad to see people with such power not stepping up and helping the children. So, seeing this teacher committing to the feelings of one child is truly inspiring.
It was a teachable lesson not only for Priscilla but for the other students who decided to bully her for a silly thing just like hair. Sometimes teachers have so much power, that they forget to use it for good. Grimm is the pure example of how one should lead a classroom, and teach them that sometimes, their words can affect people the negative way.
Three cheers for Grimm!