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Jack of a Few Trades


beak enthusiast

E
Source

"A good teacher is like a candle— It consumes itself to light the way for others."

Fresh out of college and ready to tackle her career with all of her might, Cheerilee is what some ponies would call perfect for teaching in Ponyville's schoolhouse. It's her first day on the job, and she's ready to start doing her part to help the town's foals grow to be happy, healthy adults.

Of course, there are some things that college simply can't teach. When one of her pupils begins to show signs of trouble, Cheerilee will be forced to learn a very important lesson.

Teaching is about a lot more than writing on a chalkboard.


Concept gifted to me by my good friend, Blue Flame

Concept Development, Prereading, and other assistance by KillerShadow 15

Edited by
Lord-Commander (Chapters 1-11)
Xhoral1865 (Chapter 12)
Kestrel (Chapters 12- )
MissytheAngle (Chapters 13- )

Cover art commissioned from Sayer09

Thanks go out to everyone else who has helped me along the way, and to you readers for taking the time to read my writings. Enjoy the story!

Featured on Equestria Daily! 9/30/2015

Reviewed by Blunt Reviews!

Chapters (15)
Comments ( 150 )

I can't wait to read the rest of the fic. Keep it up Jack!:yay:

A non-clopfic about Cheerilee!? Sign. Me. Up!

I'm loving it! Definitely feels like a perfect slice of life for an underrated character at an interestingly rarely-covered time frame. Keep it up!

Congrats on the story. Don't stop.

Can we get a complete class roster?
1. Apple Bloom
2. Sweetie Belle
3. Aura
4. Diamond Tiara
5. Silver Spoon
6. Piña Colada
7. Snips?
8. Snails?
9. Twist?
10. ???
11. ???
12. ???

6018603 Looks like it might be the roster. We'll know more next chapter.

Ok I finally got around to reading this. I like it so far, it's well written and flows pretty well. :twilightsmile:

Hondo is characterized really well in this chapter. Good job. You win this time! Grammar Nazi, away!:rainbowdetermined2:

Excellent work. This is exactly what a slice of life story should entail. Not a single complaint all the way around, just that we want more of it! :twilightsmile:

Man, you're really good at that descriptive language stuff. Now I feel like I've been slacking in my own fics :/

Good chapter as always Jack. I'm eager to know Aura.
60% Reading
40% Nitpicking
:rainbowkiss:

Chomping at the bit to know what happens next! Fantastic chapter!

Let's see her talent come to light now. Backstory time!

I imagine Nook as the sassy black friend:pinkiecrazy:

There are a lot of possibilities here, that I can think of, of what's going on with Aura. I know my sister, who has dislexia, struggles with reading, writing, spelling, math, and other subjects, but she's not uberly amazing at art. It could be Aspberger's or Autism. It might be some hereditary learning disability, too. Which would explain her father's refusal of the idea. I could ramble on about this though, but I adamently don't think abuse is it.
Great chapter, btw. Keep up the good work!
~Melly~

6316463 Sassy black friend? Hmm, I like that. The closest pony like that would be Sapphire Shores.

but it could also be warning signs of a learning disability

Yikes, that's a knee-jerk reaction to things! You really shouldn't say stuff like that until you're quite sure, Cheerilee -__-" No wonder he reacted poorly.

I have to say, I really enjoy this story, as it would be quite impossible for me to write.

Do you know how hard it is for me write scenes like this and not have someone kick down a door and start shooting, be they aliens or otherwise?

6323527 At first, I was the same way! After a few chapters, it got a lot easier to keep slice of life going. If you were to try doing a story like this, you'd get the hang of it quick enough. :pinkiesmile:

6316516 I must say, having a comment like this come up is the highest form of flattery to me. Someone actually took the time to try and figure out deeper meanings into the story and predict where things are going to go. Thank you so much for that!

Also yes, you're on to something there. I won't confirm or deny anything, but everyone might want to start listening to you! :ajsmug:

6323592
You're welcome! :twilightsmile: The concept of your story is very original and unique. It's exactly the kind of story I've been looking for.
I can feel for Aura and Cheerilee. My sister has dislexia, my brother has Aspberger's and is a mathematical genius, and my other brother has anxiety attacks, sucks at English and math, but is a master at drawing. I am the only child who doesn't have some form of a learning disability or mental handicap. I was the one who taught my sister to read. It was a very long road, but she grasped it. After reading an article about dislexia when I was maybe ten, I knew that's what my sister had. Somedays, it get's really frustrating; you can't get them to listen to you. They're stuck in their own little world.
But yes, reading is my life. I've been working on making my comments more in-depth and critic-like. I want to make a story reviewing group, but I need to improve my analyzing skills and actually publish my own stories, lol. :raritywink:
Keep up the awesome work! Can't wait for more. :pinkiehappy:
~Melly~

That moment you despite your stomach because your worry kept you from eating much, and then it suddenly disappears and oh my god I'm so hungry and why oh why did I order the smaller plate?!

Keep on writing.

Seems Cheerilee is finally seeing the step to helping the poor filly. Good chapter! Keep it up!

Dang. . . I nailed it. Woe to all those who rejected my prophecy! Anywho, I don't know how I managed it, but I did teach my sister to read. . . When I was 10-ish.
Great chapter! Keep up the awesome work!
~Melly~

I had the feeling it was dyslexia. My next guess was that she was nearsighted.

Great! I can't wait for the next chapter!

Good chapter. Missed opportunity for a Fresh Prince of Bel Air reference but still good though.:pinkiesmile:

What a sad ending to the chapter...

Great chapter though!

The first part of the chapter was cute. Diamond Tiara is just mean. Overall good chapter.:derpytongue2:

I really liked the playground scene! Way to go with the language and point of view. 8/8 I rate great, mate.

Pretty good stuff. I got a very "Inside Out" feel from this chapter as far as Aura getting grounded and her whole moving from Vanhoofer thing.

Daisy felt a bit stern there...but I feel Cheerilee made the right choice and didn't ask there. It'll be better if she confronts Aura about it later.

You misspelled 'caught' once.

Will it be next chapter Aura's finally told?

But dyslexia doesn't give you migranes...

Migranes can, however, give you dyslexia.

Doc, you failed hard. :facehoof:

Ah yes, the old accidentally target only the victim game. :moustache:

6572274 Au contraire! According to the rather extensive research I did on dyslexia before writing this fic, you are right that dyslexia does not cause headaches directly. However, the stress from such an activity as reading aloud when she can't even read the words to herself can cause tension headaches.

Trust me, I did a bit of looking up things before I started this story. This point is going to be addressed a bit more in the future, but I suppose I just surrendered that little bit of storytelling early. :trixieshiftleft:

Comment posted by Chessepuffs deleted Jan 16th, 2016

Yay updates! Great chapter, though I wish Cheerilee wouldn't hesitate so much, but I understand why she is.

I thought school boards only met for budgets and... stuff. Someone with dyslexia would get tested by a counselor, but it's no huge deal or anything. They go to a special class that focuses on the reading and comprehension issues, and whether they get better is a tossup. I'm not sure how treatable dyslexia is. She could call an emergency board meeting if such a class didn't exist for anypony, to propose it be added to the budget.

7016830 Again, a valid concern, but you have to consider the type of school district Ponyville is. They only have a single one-room schoolhouse, and as such, there isn't a huge number of ponies needed to keep the system working. In fact, the light work load of Ponyville's school means that a lot of jobs usually handled by designated employees, in this case like a guidance counselor, would be handled on an as-needed basis by those who are necessary, like the board members.

7050956
Ah, yeah, I'm used to school boards being populated by useless lumps of flesh who keep defunding the music program.

7058949
I wonder why that's such a common move, because mine would do the same thing.

And dump everything into football or basketball.

7102314
what I want to know is how did the music program get funded in the first place! :unsuresweetie:

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