Nobody Hugs a Cactus: A Cross-Campus Collaboration
The American Literature class hosted the downstairs Kindergarten and went to the Swain Campus for collaborative SEL work and creative drama sessions using Carter Goodrich's book, Nobody Hugs A Cactus.
Goodrich's story is about Hank, an annoyed and angry cactus, who learns that rejecting his animal friends leads to loneliness and isolation. Feeling upset about his rudeness to his friends, Hank grows a flower for Rosie the Tumbleweed, and the two friends become stuck together in a hug. In the end, Hank learns that connection and hugs are very important.
The Upper School students are studying how loneliness manifests itself in American literature and in all corners of society and wanted to hear what MA's youngest students think about the concept. When we brought Hank's story to life, all students experienced Hank's annoyance first hand and discovered what Hank really needed--a hug!
Through the activities of drawing ourselves as cactuses, talking about what makes us prickly, and growing our 'flowers,' students discussed their feelings and brainstormed together the things they could to help themselves when they are feeling lonely, sad, or angry.