CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - Thomas Jackson has been teaching art for 51 years. He settled the last 8 years of his career at Windsor Park Elementary School, teaching kids the value of expressing themselves on paper.
When we caught up with him, kids were intently watching "Mr. J" draw a fish. He instructs the students to draw neatly and not too fast.
He tells them about using lots of different colors to make their work an original.
While his lessons end up with a classroom full of third grade fish drawings, the virtues he instills in his students are far more important.
Patience, tolerance, encouragement and respect are just a few of the colors the kids can pick from in Mr. J's class.
Thomas Jackson is Teacher of the Year at Windsor Park Elementary. The 76-year old says the award is humbling.
He says he'll hang up his art supplies when he's 80, which is just 3 years away.
Jackson has written and illustrated several children's books and short stories.