First grade teacher Katie Pearson brings high energy and high expectations to her classroom at Blue Haze Elementary School in the White Settlement ISD.
Lessons and interactions with her students come with purpose and passion. Little rhymes and sayings like "kiss your brain" when kids get an answer right reinforce learning.
"She's kind, and when we do work correctly, she makes our work fun," 6-year-old Jasmine Trevino said.
Powering brains -- and ultimately futures -- is the daily goal for this teacher now in her fourth year, but she admits it can be challenging.
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"It's almost overwhelming in a sense. Because you see where they're at, and almost you feel panicked because you have so much more to go," Pearson said.
The other day, Pearson took to social media to write about the pressure of state testing, grade-level performance and academic data.
"That day, I was like, man, education is tough. And someday, you feel the weight of the world on your shoulders," she told NBC5.
The post on Facebook, though took a turn as she described the gift from a student that reminded her that in the classroom is right where she needs to be.
"But today, reality hit me straight in the face. Reality hit me by a 6-year-old holding a box of Ziplocs," Pearson wrote in her post. "Miss Pearson, I have you something. She hands me the box. Thank you so much. What are they for?"
The box of sandwich bags came from student Jasmine.
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"I gave her bags because she said she needed bags for lunch, and I didn't want her lunch to be all together," said the little girl. Jasmine saw the gesture as simply the right thing to do. "I helped because I told my mom, Miss Pearson needed bags."
Pearson remembered the day she mentioned she was out of sandwich bags.
"I put everything in one bag. The chips and sandwich in one bag thinking, 'I'm late today. I gotta hurry,'" she recalled.
The moment stayed with Jasmine all through winter break until she got back to class.
"It was a long time ago, but I still bought her bags and I forgot to give her them but now I gave her them," she said.
The sandwich bags now sit at Pearson's s desk.
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A visible reminder, that along with reading and writing, kindness and compassion are also part of the language of life.