As the Russian invasion of Ukraine continues, people around the world are displaying sunflowers to show their support for Ukraine. You can read about how sunflowers became associated with the country in “A Symbol of Peace,” in this week’s issue of TIME for Kids. Here, Alayna Asinger, 10, writes about how students at her school honored a teacher from Ukraine with a sunflower project.
I’m in the fifth grade at Pevely Elementary School, in Pevely, Missouri. Our art teacher, Arina McAllister (center), is from Ukraine. Her country is going through a terrible war. In Ukraine, sunflowers represent peace. To us, they also mean support, love, and faith. My grandma Mona Asinger (left) works in the school cafeteria. It was her idea to shower Mrs. McAllister with sunflowers. Every student drew or colored sunflowers to hang. It was beautiful to see Mrs. McAllister’s face when she saw her hallway walls covered in them! You could tell she loved it. She even cried. Being away from family and friends is hard. Knowing the dangers they face is even harder. Fortunately, Mrs. McAllister’s husband, children, and parents are here with her. And we are, too. —By Alayna Asinger, 10