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Ms. Manuel


I am so impressed with the Why Mom Deserves a Diamond® contest. By participating in it, many young writers will feel the power of their words. They'll be able to pay tribute to their mothers and experience how their 25 words touch the hearts of their wonderful moms. I am sure there are lots of tears and hugs that follow the reading of each piece of writing. I enjoyed reading each and every entry and encourage everyone to keep writing!

Interviewer:  What do you feel is the most important aspect of the Why Mom Deserves a Diamond contest?

Kathi:  Well, I think it gives each child an opportunity to really think, with only twenty-five words to write about what their mother thinks about them.  If you only have twenty-five words, you have to be really choosy in which ones you pick, and I think that’s what I find is the most fascinating about the contest.

Interviewer: How do you feel the Why Mom Deserves a Diamond contest contributes to the long-term self-esteem of students?

Kathi:  In the same way, they have an opportunity to actually stop and think, “Well, what does my mom mean to me?” To think of something unique in terms of similes, like she’s as cuddly as a bear, as bright as a diamond, and as they progress and they’re older and older they can come up with really unique images that convey what they think about their moms and how important she is to them.

Interviewer: What are the benefits of writing and reading words of appreciation to our mothers?

Kathi:  I’ve actually come on the days when my previous students have come and read to their mothers and picked out their stones and there is just this real feeling of love and joy and appreciation and the moms have a special day when their children pick out their garnets or their amethysts and for a lucky few, a diamond, and present that to their moms.  Reading their words to their moms, I think, are really powerful.

Interviewer: And what’s our favorite part about the contest?

Kathi:  Well, I think reading them.  Because you read a lot, and a lot of the same words come up, but you are looking for those few that say it uniquely, something different.  In writing we have something that we call voice, and that’s when the child’s personality comes through their writing.  It isn’t mechanical; it’s magical, really. It’s really fun finding those possible winners and of course reading all of them is a joy, but looking for those special ones are the most fun for me.

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