Tina's Ten Points

Discussion in 'Youth Forum' started by tyndale1946, Oct 25, 2001.

  1. tyndale1946

    tyndale1946
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    Tina's Ten Points
    By Tom Krause
    She was seventeen years old and always wore a bright smile. This may not seem that unusual except that Tina suffered from cerebral palsy, a condition that left her muscles stiff and, for the most part, unmanageable. Because she had trouble speaking, it was this bright smile that reflected her true personality – a great kid. She used a walker most of the time to navigate through the crowded school hallways. A lot of times people didn't speak to her. Why? Who knows? Maybe it was because she looked different and the rest of the students didn't know how to approach her. Tina usually broke the ice with people she met in the halls (especially boys) with a big "Hi."

    The assignment was to memorize three stanzas of the poem "Don't Quit." I only made the assignment worth ten points since I figured most of my students wouldn't do it anyway. When I was in school and a teacher assigned a ten-point homework assignment, I would probably have blown it off myself. So I wasn't expecting much from today's teenagers either. Tina was in the class, and I noticed a look on her face that was different from the normal bright smile. The look was one of worry. 'Don't worry, Tina,' I thought to myself, 'it's only ten points.'

    The day the assignment came due arrived and as I went through my roster my expectations were met, as one by one each student failed to recite the poem. "Sorry, Mr. Krause," was the standard reply. "It's only worth ten points anyway...right?" Finally, in frustration and half kidding, I proclaimed that the next person who didn't recite the poem perfectly had to drop on the floor and give me ten push-ups. This was a leftover discipline technique from my days as a physical education teacher. To my surprise, Tina was next. Tina used her walker to move to the front of the class and, straining to form the words, began to try to recite the poem. She made it to the end of the first stanza when she made a mistake. Before I could say a word, she threw her walker to the side, fell to the floor and started doing push-ups. I was horrified and wanted to say, "Tina, I was just kidding!" But she crawled back up in her walker, stood in front of the class and continued the poem. She finished all three stanzas perfectly, one of only a handful of students who did, as it turned out.

    When she finished, a fellow student spoke up and asked, "Tina, why did you do that? It's only worth ten points!"

    Tina took her time forming the words and said, "Because I want to be like you guys – normal."

    Silence fell on the whole room when another student exclaimed, "Tina, we're not normal – we're teenagers! We get in trouble all the time."

    "I know," Tina said as a big smile spread across her face.

    Tina got her ten points that day. She also got the love and respect of her classmates. To her, that was worth a whole lot more than ten points.

    I felt the young folks would enjoy this story... Brother Glen [​IMG]
     
  2. Grace

    Grace
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    Sniffle,
    I go to church with a boy with C. P. We all treat him like he's the greatest thing since Ice cream. When he's around us, he's just Cody- one of the guys.
     

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