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A morning at school puts it all in perspective

Submitted by on Friday, 30 October 2009 No Comment

big_guy_halloweenOne boy froze as if paralyzed when the plastic bag of foam spider parts landed on his desk.

“I can’t get it open,” the first-grader pleaded. “Can you do it?” I did, but uncertainty seemingly gripped him again. “What do I do now?”

“Why don’t you look at the example Mrs. M did and put on the board? I bet you can figure it out.” In roughly 3.6 seconds, he had figured it out. Faker!

A girl made it halfway through gluing the project together before she looked around, saw that many kids were head of her and wailed “I can’t do it!“as the foam slid around in the glue. Once she was showed that using less glue and pressing harder would keep everything in place, she was fine.

Another girl kept waving the glittery purple scarf from her Hanna Montana costume, occasionally flipping it into a classmate’s face. After the fifth flip and fourth warning, the scarf went to a timeout on the teacher’s desk for the rest of the day.

In each of them, I could see a bit of Big Guy.

Big Guy, who has been known to plead for help he doesn’t need. Big Guy, who will wail in frustration before putting his head down and figuring out how to do it. Big Guy, who keeps doing tiny obnoxious things you swear he does just to drive you mad.

Big Guy might be a little – OK, a lot – louder and yappier than most of the kids in his class. Big Guy, as predictably as the days shorten as summer turns into fall, will be a constant pain in the butt at the start of each new school years as he learns that, yes, the new teacher means it when she says to follow the rules.

But Big Guy, after all, is still only 6 and has a ways to go in figuring out the world.

It’s easy to forget that sometimes, particularly when he continues to be a twit after he’s been told several times to do or not do something. But seeing him in his class today with a group of 20 other kids his age, I realized that he’s not that much different from his peers. There are a few saintly exceptions – the ones who immediately do as they’re asked and who never interrupt – but saintliness just isn’t in Big Guy’s nature.

Goodness is, though. So are curiosity, enthusiasm and a passion for life. I just have to remember that the next time he’s bent on driving me bananas.

Copyright 2009 Debra Legg. All rights reserved.

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