This precious fable features Rose, a character who uses imagination, purpose and patience to build a community that is beautiful in every sense of the word. The plot involves Rose traveling in her teapot to a new land, a barren urban setting. She makes a plan to transform her new home. This eventually involves the efforts and power of people, nature, and time. The result is a joyful place, inclusive of all! Although there is no direct reference within the story, the 2009 publication is a tribute to Rose Kennedy and Boston’s Rose Fitzgerald Kennedy Greenway.
Rose’s Garden lends itself to many instructional opportunities with students, ranging in complexity from plot development to character traits and motivations, to theme and social change. Similarly, it serves as a springboard to various extension activities, with the possibility to bridge narrative and expository texts.
This book keeps popping into my thoughts as I work remotely. My conversations with colleagues, family, and friends, coupled with my reading about complete strangers, highlight that we are united: We are all teachers and learners as we adjust and survive this unprecedented time. At this time, there is no “expert” group who can guide any one of us in our individual needs and pursuits. This realization brings me to Reynold’s character, Rose. She leads with a defined sense of purpose, steady and visionary imagination, and enduring patience. As teachers and learners in Spring 2020, perhaps this is exactly what is needed to care for ourselves and those in our lives.