Ruth Upson Elementary

Rhema Thompson / WJCT News

  In Katherine Stallings’ room, the lights are dim. A large blue table with four small chairs takes up most of the little space, along with several book shelves, pictures and a large stuffed butterfly. But it doesn’t feel cramped. It feels cozy, like the kind of place someone might want to curl up with a blanket and a book.

As she enters the room, Stallings instructs her class of four to get up and stretch.

“Touch your toes,” she tells them. “Touch your nose. Take a deep breath, bend through your mouth.”