I am home, but my heart is still at school. TEACHERS... I have no idea how you do it. I seriously would be a basket case of tears and in jail for kidnapping kids from school. Here is the story.
His name is Levi. Levi is one of five siblings. Levi is never on time to school. He comes in late every day, sits by himself in the center pod (no carpet) and eats his breakfast all by himself each morning. Levi can be coopertive (good days) or a spitting snarling mad little boy (very bad days). Levi has way more bad days then good days. Levi has come to school with horrible breath, dirty clothes and very dirty teeth many days.
After he finished his breakfast this morning, he got on the computer and just sat there by himself. I asked him if he wanted to come join the rest of the kids on the carpet. He said, "I don't want to get the rest of the kids sick". He is always sick. Never have I seen him 100% healthy. So I said, "did you get some medicine to feel better." That did not make him happy. He reponded, "I did not get any medicine."
I started to rub his back and I said, "I hope you start to feel better, and I think your very kind to respect the kids and not want to share your cold".
I gave him some distance for a few moments. Then I asked him to show me what the teacher ment by "five at five" The kids are suppose to choose any one of five things to do quietly so the teacher can work one on one with children at her desk. Levi liked that I followed him and wanted to see what he was going to do. He said, "I have to read one of my books quietly." I said, "It says you should read a book to a friend, can I be your friend today? Will you read a book to me and then I will read a book to you? Levi's little face lit up.
So we sat at his table and talked and read the story. After practicing a few lines of the story, he memorized it and repeated it to me. I was telling him "Great job" "Way to go" and "Give me a high five for that one" He was beaming. He said very excitedly, "Its time to clean up and go to the carpet." Now Levi wanted to be near his friends. Now he wanted to participate with the class. I asked him, "Can I sit on the carpet with you?" Maybe Levi just needed some unconditional love today? Maybe being asked if I could be his friend, he got a choice? Maybe my new pal was starting to feel better?
Levi sat quietly and listened to the teacher and participated in questions she asked. I was really proud of him. I leaned over and said, "you are behaving so good today. I am so proud of you." Bless his wee little heart, He broke mine when he asked, "can you rub my back again". So I did while he listened. Then we were dismissed to do another activity quietly while she worked with another five kids. (15 kids in class total)
"I am going to do sight words." Levi realized I was coming with him and in the few moments on the floor, Levi and I started to bond. I have been in the classroom a number of times and this is the first time I have had time with Levi because the child I am normally assigned to help was not there today.
We linked letters together and sounded them out and he would yell, "CAT, DIG, IT" and so on. He said, "This is so much fun, I wish you could play with me everyday." Preston came over and said, "I want you to play with me now." "Ok Preston, the next word is yours, what does this say?" "COW"
Again, when this activity was over we came together on the carpet. Levi was glued to my side. Another little girl Destiny was also at my side. Destiny will see me anytime on campus and run up to give me a hug. I leaned over and said, "Hey you two are behaving so well, I don't have to sit with you. I have to go sit with the boys on the floor who are being disrubtive and try to remind them to be quiet." Levi and Destiny didn't like it but they were good for carpet time.
Then the class had a reading, writing, cutting, pasting activity project to do. Levi asked, "Will you help me?" Destiny asked, "Will you help me?" "Yes, I will be so glad to help you because you have been so polite today", I told them. I explained that I would walk from one table to the next being their special helper today.
The activity went really well and everyone finished their project. Now my own little girl was feeling a bit put out and so I came to her chair and helped her finish her paper. Levi was glued to my hip. I was kneeling down and told him, "I am so proud of you for your excellant behavior today, can I have a hug?"
I went to hug him and he kept his arms at his side. I said, "Hey I want a hug, that means you put your arms around me too". He didn't understand. Then it dawned on me... He isn't hugged at home. This little five year old boy doesn't know how to hug. I took his arms and put them around my shoulders. He still didn't understand and so I released him. But he was not leaving my side. He was starved for attention. He said, "I want you to go play with us" Will you go to the lunch room with us?"
"No baby, I have to go home." He tried to follow me out the door. I said, "Levi can I come and spend time with you next week?" He just nodded. Neither of us cried, but I think we both wanted to. "Today has been a really good day, and I hope to spend a lot more good days with you." I left him with his class lining up for recess.
The teacher said, "Thank you. I got so much done today with the other kids because I wasn't constantly reprimanding Levi".
Levi loves being read too.
So there you have it.. God has just assigned me a new job.
I am going to make sure Levi learns how to hug and gets read to.
This is Girl Schmuck signing off.