March’s Ambassador of Sunshine :: Allison Zaccardi

Friday, March 9, 2012

Once a month we will highlight a person who personifies our mission statement here at The Bright Side Project. This person will wear the title of “Honorary Ambassador of Sunshine.” The qualifications are simple: spread sunshine and actively live with the conviction that life is (still) beautiful. That’s it!


Allison Zaccardi

Tell us a little bit about yourself: who you are and what you do.

I am a high school teacher in a large urban school district.  Our school has all of the richness that a large district offers, which makes everyday an adventure. I teach Family and Consumer Science (formally known as Home Ec.) which includes classes like Child Development, Independent Living, Nutrition and Fitness, Culinary Arts, and Product Development.  I LOVE my job, working with high school age students is so exciting. In our classes they are learning and building on the life experiences they have had and recognizing the value of their stories.

Have you spread some sunshine recently or have you witnessed a random act of kindness? Please explain in detail.

I use the Weekly Wisdom from your site in my classroom to help students work on their writing skills, as well as defining their values, identities and how they fit in to the bigger world. On Mondays I have the quote up and have students write a reflection on what it means to them in their lives.  They then share with people at their table and if they would like to share with the class they may.   A lot of the quotes have led to really great class discussions and have opened all of our eyes to different interpretations and experiences.  It always makes me smile when a students references a quote from earlier in the semester in an assignment or discussion.  I also encourage students to figure out who the people are that are being quoted, how does their background influence how we interpret the quote.

How did the recipient react and what was your personal reaction?

The quotes have really been a fun and energizing part of our classroom routine. Students are learning so many skills (writing, analyzing, discussion, acceptance, etc) and having so much fun.  We usually start our week with this activity, but students ask for more quotes if we have any extra time during the week.  I see the quotes written on the cover of notebooks and folders, and students give me quotes that they have found to share with the class.

Alison, thank you so much for sharing your experience with us and we hope this inspires others to open themselves up to the possibility of inspiration in their daily lives on any level! 

If you or someone you know has been spreading sunshine please contact us. From holding the door open for the man carrying too many bags to witnessing a random act of kindness to a stranger, we want to hear about it! Let’s start a chain reaction of kindness and sunshine. 

To nominate an “Honorary Ambassador of Sunshine”,  please email your answers to the following questionnaire to krista@thebrightsideproject.com. Because life is most definitely (still) beautiful!

*Name and website (if you have something you want us to link to.)
*Tell us a little bit about yourself: who you are and what you do.
*Have you spread some sunshine recently or have you witnessed a random act of kindness? Please explain in detail.
*How did the recipient react and what was your personal reaction?

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  1. 1
    Barbi says:

    I applaud Alison for incorporating this website’s weekly quotes into her classroom routine.  The way she uses the quotes makes the students actually think about themselves, how they feel about certain things in their lives and it teaches them about opening their minds to interpretations other than their own.  It would be wonderful if we had many more teachers like Alison to make our children think outside the box of standard schoolwork. 

  2. 2
    Susan says:

    It’s wonderful to have teachers out there like Allison. We need more like her!

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