Help from audio books [Photo]

Peg Hurley, English Language Learners teacher, helps Desire's sister, Jeanine, start an audio book to read along with. Jeanine says that her favorite part of classroom time is writing but that the best thing about school is the ice cream in the cafeteria.

Teaching English [Photo]

Peg Hurley, English Language Learners teacher, has a dozen refugee students in her class at Grant — the largest number she's had at the elementary level. Some of her students had never attended a formal school before. All need help with English. Hurley said she finds that rhymes and music help students remember the language.

Individual attention [Photo]

Retired MU English professor Doug Hunt volunteers to tutor Iratubona Desire on a regular basis. "Desire is so eager to learn English that he would spend all day learning it," Hunt says.

Pointing out his former home [Photo]

Iratubona Desire points out where he is from on a map in his teacher's room at Grant Elementary School. Desire is one of nine African refugee students at Grant.

Opposing the occupation [Photo]

Abdillahi Abdinoor holds a protest sign. The demonstration lasted more than an hour.

Sign of protest [Photo]

Syed Ahsam holds up a sign among the protesters gathered outside the post office.

Gathering spot [Photo]

Demonstrators gather outside the post office.

Heading toward the post office [Photo]

Protesters cross Walnut Street toward the post office in downtown Columbia.

Calling for a cease-fire [Photo]

Ahmed El-Tayash chants for a cease-fire and peace.

Moving west on Locust [Photo]

Protestors march west down Locust Street away from the Islamic Center of Central Missouri. As they marched, they chanted for peace and justice and an end to the Israeli siege in Gaza.

Marching for peace [Photo]

Ahmed El-Tayash chants for a cease-fire and peace in Gaza during a march by the Islamic Center; Boone Tikkun, a Jewish and interfaith group; the Mid-Missouri Fellowship of Reconciliation; and Mid-Missouri Peaceworks. The group marched at 2 Friday afternoon from the Islamic Center up Providence Road then east to the Post Office.

Meghan Gilliss [Photo]

“My friend and I were talking last night, and she decided to learn to make new mistakes instead of the same ones over and over, which seems like a good idea to me.” — Meghan Gilliss, 25

Dane Altemueller [Photo]

“I want to start waking up earlier, exercise regularly, eat a balanced breakfast and read the paper before 9 a.m.” — Dane Altemueller

Kim Jennings [Photo]

“I want to treat my wife better. And I’m going to quit smoking, but not until Jan. 17 because that’s when I have my next doctor’s appointment.” — Kim Jennings

Alleyah Loveall, 3 [Photo]

“I just want to play and do homework!” — Alleyah Loveall, 3

Somrith Lem [Photo]

“I want to see Missouri basketball win the national championship this year!" — Somrith Lem

Dwight Williams [Photo]

“My wife and I would like to travel more. We’re putting some things on hold so we can get our debt paid down.” — Dwight Williams, 68

Addison Myers, 77 [Photo]

“I’m hoping to live another year. I hope for good health for my wife and myself. I’ve been healthy, and I’d like to continue to be. I’d like to play one more (acting) role somewhere.” — Addison Myers, 77

Stephany Williams [Photo]

“I’m going to college, getting a new car, changing my appearance. … I’m excluding people out of my life. One more person that doesn’t benefit me.” — Stephany Williams, 18, Columbia

Jordan Anderson [Photo]

“My New Year’s resolution is to be nicer to people, be more kind, not so mean. Like the other day, I told a girl get out of my way because she was standing in front of me, she was tall. I thought that was mean. I don’t want to do stuff like that again.” — Jordan Anderson