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Censored verse.
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Please pass the Neosporin.
Pi Day.
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Rainbow on the corner.
Interracial relationships.
Ho hum.

Friday, March 24, 2006

Santa take note.

I spent yesterday in a first grade classroom at a city magnet school as part of an enrichment program. These kids were some of the most fun, interested, outgoing children I've ever had the pleasure of being involved with. I felt completely trusted and accepted, even though I hadn't seen their smiling faces since Christmas when I helped them build gingerbread houses out of graham crackers, frosting, and used milk cartons.

With St. Patrick's Day having recently passed, there was a holiday themed class project on their bulletin board. The teacher had given them pages starting with, "If I found a pot of gold, I would..." and the children wrote in the rest themselves.
Not being a particularly eye-catching display, it was easy to overlook. At one point during some downtime, however, I found myself reading their answers. It almost made me cry.
Every single child made unselfish requests. I counted:
House for their family: 6
Car for their family: 4
Food for their family: 3
Give money to poor people: 2
A park so they could play with their family: 1
A toy for their sister: 1
Give the money to their family: 1

I really wish I'd have copied a few of the answers verbatim. They were so sweet and sincere, using words like "love" and "trust."
The reason this was so heartwrenching for me is that collectively these kids have absolutely no hint of depression or poverty on them. Their inner desires and their outward attitudes seemed incongruous to me.

On a less philosophical note, it was great to see the class only had 18 kids and that the writing exercise was done with excellent penmanship and only a few grammatical errors.
posted by hilary at 8:00 AM |


Blogger Blue said...

Awww, how sweet! I almost cried just reading that!

3/24/2006 8:50 AM  
Blogger Roy said...

That's beautiful hilary, although I hasten to add that my own answers at that age would have been vastly different. :-)

I think if you had read what *my* class would have written it would have made you cry, but not in a good way. :-P

3/25/2006 6:50 AM  
Blogger Gina said...

How nice of those kids to think of others and not themselves. I could totally see the kids around here asking for the latest game system and other toys, which is very sad.

3/26/2006 6:23 AM  

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