NYT: Extracts – EVER since Barack Obama’s inauguration, the staff members and tutors at our nonprofit writing programs have marveled at how this presidency has percolated through student essays, stories and poems.
And it’s not just the president who has captured their attention — his wife, Michelle, has, too. From our students’ perspective, Mrs. Obama is glamorous but accessible, maternal but cool. They trust her.
So, earlier this fall, 826 National hosted a series of workshops inviting students to write to the first lady. The results were collected in the book “I Live Real Close to Where You Used to Live: Kids’ Letters to Michelle Obama (and to Sasha, Malia and Bo).”
Here is a sampling of what they came up with:
Dear Mrs. Obama,
You’re the greatest person I ever met. I know that you married Obama because he cares about people and also you think he is a special person. How big is your garden? I hope you have great vegetables and fruits so your two children can be strong and grow too. You’re a better dancer than your husband.
I live in Los Angeles. I live in a white and gray apartment. My favorite things are soccer, movies and also princesses. Do you think princesses are for little kids?
— TATIANA MORALES, age 10, Los Angeles
Dear Mrs. Obama,
If I was to get invited to eat dinner with you, I’d have so much fun. What if I was your daughter? I’d love you a whole lot and I would always play with you. Malia and Sasha are beautiful children and are so sweet to other people that they see. I would like to become friends with your two daughters. Can I? You should take Sasha and Malia to the Brooklyn Park out on Sixth Street. It has a swing that pushes by itself and if you say high it will go high, if you say low it will go low.
The Brooklyn Park closes at midnight and I stay until 10. It’s fun. I have too much fun. When I run I burn off energy. I know that you want kids to exercise every day for an hour, but I exercise two hours and 30 minutes every day.