Room 100 Holds the Secret to Fighting the War on Terror. Are you Interested?

Filed under: Check-it-out, Community, Family, Pondering

I am completely fascinated by this letter–A Daddy’s Letter to His Little Girl (About Her Future Husband) By Dr. Kelly Flanagan. It caught my interest and I can’t stop thinking about it.

After stumbling across destructive advice, licensed clinical psychologist Dr. Kelly Flanagan writes a letter to his daughter about what really matters in a relationship.

“…Because in the end, Little One, the only thing you should have to do to “keep him interested” is to be you.

Your eternally interested guy,


Quite a few thoughts have been running through my mind since my fellow Wolf Pack sisters, A.N. Remtulla, tweeted about this letter on Father’s Day. I’ve though about my Dad, my husband, my boys and myself. But as a mom, I keep coming back to my own children. I’ve come to realize that not only do I want to raise my boys to think and act this way, but I also want them to be treated this way by the females in their lives. Boys deserve to be loved for all the right reason too. I don’t want someone to marry them for money or reasons lacking in depth. I want my boys to have someone that loves and respects them. Like Dr. Flanagan, that is the one and only thing their future partner and I MUST have in common.

But the pondering doesn’t stop there. It feels bigger than just my own kids.

I’ve come to realize we are living in a generation of terrorism. And I don’t just mean religious and political attacks. We terrorize each other. Our children are born without prejudice and it is a beautiful thing, but it also means that someone is teaching hate and disrespect. There are too many children who find it easier to hurt one another than help each other. Whether we realize it or not, we role model how to be bullies or we turn the other cheek, pretending not to see what is happening in front of us. We put our heads down, afraid to step up and speak up, for fear of what it will cost us, forgetting that our children think everything we do is interesting. They rarely do what we say, but they often do what we do. It is time to flood the world with every day heroes. Enough small gestures can tip the scales…

I recently got to attend an end of the year celebration for my 4th grader. He’s in Room 100 and he’s been with the same teacher and the same group of students for two years, but that is not the amazing part. What brought me to tears was the sense of community and family that this amazing teacher created for these children. She made it very clear from day one that she found each and every one of her students interesting and valuable. I believe her gestures acted like an invitation. Take a journey with me. She was suggesting that if those kids invested in each other, they would find a classroom of interesting and valuable people. And they did. It was a gift.

There’s no bullying in this classroom. Some days there are kids who make mistakes–kids who make poor choices. But there are no bullies. There also doesn’t seem to be a lot of shame or insecurity. Instead there appears to be a lot of joy. They sing, dance, perform, joke, play and laugh. They cheer each other on. I wish I could show you the videos. It would make your heart soar. The potential. No one threatened them to “not be bullies.” Instead, they showed them how to be friends. There is respect, and it hovers around this class like an aura. It is beautiful to witness. So many of the things that seem to be “our issues” don’t seem to be “their issues.”

upset boy against a wall

There IS a difference between a child gaining resilience and a child being forced to survive.

Life and people will never be perfect, even in a great classroom in a really good school. In fact despite how much I adore what has happened in Room 100, I believe that my children still need to learn to roll with the punches–to weather other people’s mistakes. Life IS hard. They have to learn to navigate it in a healthy way.

I was recently reading a blog post by Kristen Lamb, on Handling Criticism, that included an experiment done in a Bio-dome. Under near perfect conditions, closely monitored trees planted within the dome, never grew as tall or strong as the trees that had to weather the storms outside. The trees in the wild were forced to make deep roots in order to hang on. Or grow tall to reach the sun. That is valuable. I do not want to take adversity away from my kids. It’s a tool they need to grow into amazing human beings. It is the doorway to kindness, empathy, success, self-worth and resilience. They need to learn to bend in the wind.

But they do not need to feel terror.

In Room 100, there isn’t perfection. There is not an absence of things gone wrong. Mistakes are made. Tears exist. But in the midst of all of that, something wonderful happened. Over the last two years, the teachers involved  with this class showed up. They lead and the kids watched very carefully. Then they became interested in changing their world for the better. Who would have suspected that Room 100 would hold the secret to fighting the war on terror?

Room 100 is the start. Are you interested?



Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,


11 Responses | TrackBack URL | Comments Feed

  1. God bless the teacher in Room 101.

    • I don’t have the words to say how much I love her. <3

  2. Kim – this is so beautifully written. My favorite sentiment…”No one threatened them to “not be bullies.” Instead, they showed them how to be friends. There is respect, and it hovers around this class like an aura. It is beautiful to witness.”
    I hope you don’t mind me sharing….

  3. Love this, Kim! My son was not in Room 100 but he gave a teacher appreciation gift to the teacher anyway…just because. She is a wonderful person and teacher in and out of the classroom. So glad to have her and such a fantastic group of kids at our school!

  4. Thank you for putting into words what so many of us have been feeling. This is an amazing teacher and a wonderful group of students, and I’m sure they will always carry with them all they’ve learned.

    • I agree! They’ve been touched by something special and they will always have it to carry with them. <3

  5. I so agree with EVERYTHING!!!


  6. […] she wrote about a teacher and classroom that our children shared for two years.  It was called Room 100 Holds the Secret to Fighting the War on Terror.  Are you Interested? Just recalling it makes my eyes brim with tears.  It was so beautifully written and it immediately […]

  7. I can’t hear anhtiyng over the sound of how awesome this article is.

Leave a Reply

By submitting this comment you consent to your contact details being stored in accordance with this website's Privacy Policy.

  1. Now Available

    Touching the Surface
  1. Follow Kimberly


  1. Archives



    agent Anica Rissi Apocalypsies blogging Bookanistas Book Review Class of 2k12 Conferences Contest Dad drafting Ellen Hopkins giveaway Jane Yolen Jodi Moore John Green Kimberly Sabatini Kimmiepoppins Kim Sabatini LA11SCBWI laurie halse anderson Lin Oliver Michelle Wolfson NaNoWriMo Oblong Books reading revision running SCBWI Simon and Schuster Simon Pulse The Class of 2k12 The Opposite of Gravity Touching the Surface WHEN A DRAGON MOVES IN by Jodi Moore Wolf Pack Wolfson Literary writing writing style YA Author YA Book YA Books YA Novel YA Outside the Lines YA Writer
  1. Links

  1. The Apocalypsies
    The Class of 2K12