ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

How The Boy from The Polar Express Saved Christmas

Updated on November 20, 2016
Source

My youngest daughter had a hearing problem when she was little. She was essentially deaf between 1 and 3 years old; after she had surgery to fix her hearing, she was placed in special education classes so she could catch up.

After a couple of years in special ed, her teachers suggested we "mainstream" her, which means putting her in regular classes. Her doctor said it was too soon and predicted she would fail and wind up back in special ed.

But that year, she was blessed with an amazing kindergarten teacher, Jeff Thompson (Mr. T). He won several major "Teacher of the Year" awards, including the Disney award; he beat out 150,000 other teachers that year! My daughter thrived in his classroom and silenced all her haters.

Mr. T told kids that he was the boy from the story.
Mr. T told kids that he was the boy from the story. | Source

Every quarter, Mr. T built a new project for the kids to enjoy: a life-size dinosaur dig; a space capsule; Chinatown for the New Year.

But it was his Christmas tradition that really touched my heart.

He said that one year, before Christmas, one of his students arrived at school, sad as can be. Not only was the little boy's father deployed to Iraq, but several older kids on his bus had cruelly revealed that, HA! There is no Santa Claus! Mr. T's heart practically broke for the little boy.

So, every year, on the day before his class gets out for Christmas break, Mr. T has a pajama party. The kids love sitting around their classroom in their jammies, eating cookies and watching The Polar Express on the big screen. What the kids don't know is that Mr. T already prepped them for the party by reading the book to them the day before.

(If you don't know the story, it's about a boy who's losing his belief in Santa ... but then the Polar Express arrives in front of his house to take him to the North Pole! When he gets off the train, he's scared because he cannot hear the bells on Santa's sleigh; he thinks he's too old to believe in Santa! After few moments, he decides that he does believe in Santa, and the bells jingle once again for him. Santa chooses him as the child who will receive the first gift of Christmas. He only asks for a bell from Santa's sleigh which he sadly loses before he gets back on the train, because he has a hole in the pocket of his housecoat. The next morning - Christmas morning! - under the Christmas tree, he opens up his box from Santa and what does he find inside? Santa's bell, delivered by the Big Guy himself!)

Jeff Thompson, the teacher who saved Christmas for one little boy
Jeff Thompson, the teacher who saved Christmas for one little boy

But that's not the special part. Anybody can read a story or show a movie.

After the movie ends, and the kids are left with a renewed faith in Santa, Mr. T grabs a big, red velvet bag out of his storage closet and brings it over to the kids. It jingles ever so quietly as he walks over to them; all curious eyes are on him as he plops it down and begins to root through the bag, like he's searching for something.

"Can you hear it?" he asks them as he digs through the bag. Twenty-five heads nod enthusiastically. Yes! Of course they can hear the bells!

Finally, when the excitement is almost too much to bear, he pulls a big, golden bell slowly out of the bag and says, very solemnly, "I am the little boy from the story."

Huge gasps of disbelief from the audience. You could hear mistletoe drop. "I am the little boy from The Polar Express."

"That was you??"

"Yes." He jangled the bell. "Santa gave me this bell ... and he also asked me to give each of you all a bell from his sleigh." And then he reached into the big, red bag and pulled out a bell for each student. Pure magic!

Oh! The joy on their faces, to think that Santa himself had given them those bells!

It was such a small gesture that meant the world to so many kids over the years. We have a lot to learn from folks like Jeff Thompson, the little boy from The Polar Express.

© 2015 Carrie Peterson

Comments

    0 of 8192 characters used
    Post Comment

    No comments yet.

    working

    This website uses cookies

    As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, hubpages.com uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

    For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at: https://hubpages.com/privacy-policy#gdpr

    Show Details
    Necessary
    HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
    LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
    Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
    AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
    HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
    Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
    CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
    Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the googleapis.com or gstatic.com domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
    Features
    Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
    Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
    Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
    PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
    MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
    Marketing
    Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
    Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
    Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
    Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
    Statistics
    Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
    ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
    Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)