Amber had only been at Heartwood for a short time when it began to feel like home. Inspired by the Phillip Phillips song, Home, she decided to create a video to capture her feelings of belonging in a form she could share with her classmates.
Over the course of just a couple of days and using her cell phone, Amber created a beautiful video highlighting what it means to be a part of the Heartwood community. Her teachers, Mr. Ray and Ms. Missy, approved the project and, along with the rest of the staff, are excited to share it.
While watching the video, I noticed how much the kids were enjoying themselves. How comfortable, even on camera, the students seemed. Amber shared her personal feelings of acceptance, but it meant a lot more to me as a parent. What Amber felt moved to express and then share is what I think most parents want for their children. A place to feel loved, safe and to belong. She told me that she’d found that at Heartwood and was sure other kids could find it here too.
Amber began filming 6 years ago when she was just 5 years old. She started by filming herself playing with legos but has since graduated to stop motion animation. She uses American Girl dolls for her videos because they are easy to manipulate and will hold a pose relatively easily.
“Sometimes kids get teased for liking dolls, but when I came to Heartwood I felt like I could share that with people and not get made fun of. I felt like I could do anything.”
Amber wants to be a director. It is important to her to keep learning and to keep getting better at making films.
“This is what I am passionate about. I want to be a director and actor. When you love something, you don’t care what it takes, you don’t care what other people say. You just do it anyway.”
Welcome to Heartwood, Amber. Welcome home. We are glad you are here.