Jonathan’s talks and persuasive writing

It is amazing to see Jonathan maturing.  He’s eight now.  I can’t believe it!  One way I’ve seen this maturing is in his writing – specifically his primary talks.  Previously Bryan or I have worked with him, as we do with the others, to put together a talk – one that reflects their understanding pretty well, but is crafted by the parent still.  Late last year Jonathan decided he was going to write a talk himself.  His topic was something like “I know that Heavenly Father hears and answers my prayers.”  I remembered near the end of the week that he had the talk and commented about needing to write that when I was informed that it was already written.  Here’s what he had:

"I know that God answers prayers because one time there was a girl named Grace. She judged my drawings and food at lunch (gave looks that made him feel they weren't good). So I prayed that Grace would be nice. After 29 days a lady named Ms. Bickelhaupt needed me (one of the school counselors). We talked about Grace. She (?) Grace and made Grace say sorry and now we are friends and that is how I know."

Wow.  I knew he’d been struggling socially, specifically with a little girl in his class, and I’d talked to the teacher to try to determine exactly what had been going on, but I hadn’t heard this story until I read it in his talk.  It was really sweet to read it.  I talked with him more and learned that when Ms. Bickelhaupt had come to the classroom he’d prayed that she would want to talk with him and he was overjoyed when she did ask for him.  Very sweet.

Then on the back:

Doctrine and Covenants 112:10. I’m pretty sure the two images at the top show someone getting baptized, with 8’s beside them because that’s the age of baptism for children born in our church.



His latest talk wasn’t quite as personal, but it was still very fun to watch him write it himself.  He did ask for help on this one, but instead of telling him what to write, I had him read the Word of Wisdom from the scriptures, helped him understand some parts that were a little harder for him, then talked with him about how he lives it himself.  Then made him write it himself.  :)  Here’s what he wrote:

"God wants us to be careful what we put in our bodies. The Lord says we should only eat: a little meat. The Lord tells us to eat: grains, veggies, and fruit and never to drink: tea, coffee, joe (something he heard from the Polar Express - didn't know what it was but was quite sure it was among those things to avoid), beer, and alcohol. We do that then we will be more flexible people and more better at learning. I know not to drink bad stuff. I believe that if we follow the Word of Wisdom that we could have a better life. In the name of Jesus Christ, amen."

It was amusing to see him translate promises of health and strength to being “more flexible.”  And Bryan cringed at the “more better” part.  :)  But it was really neat to see him put this together.  And the fact that he drew a diagram at the bottom to illustrate it was so characteristic of him.  :)

This isn’t a talk, but it’s something else I came across when looking for the first talk:

We got this in the mail a few months ago and were kind of confused – who had it come from?  The writing was interesting, and Bryan’s name was spelled wrong.  Huh.  No return address.  Hmmm….

Then we opened it and understood:

Jonathan’s class was working on persuasive writing.  And apparently Jonathan decided to persuade us to give him an iPod Touch.  And it’s a great idea because then he won’t be needing to borrow Bryan’s phone to play Angry Birds.  Win-win!

Cute.  No, Jonathan didn’t get an iPod Touch.  Not even for his birthday.  But it was cute nonetheless.  :)


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