“…it is quite possible for a 4 year old to humble an adult to ‘scum under shoe’ status…”
Before finding an Art Teaching position, I worked part time as an Assistant Preschool Teacher. The pay was lousy, but I got to eat popsicles and graham crackers every day, rub backs at naptime, and sing the Willaby Wallabey song. Jackpot.
One day during story time, the head teacher had the kiddos circled around her on the carpet, and I was sitting in the back. Somewhere around page three, something with a lot of legs and antennae skittered out from under the playhouse. Probably a centipede.
The kids shrieked almost as loud as the other teacher who re-located to standing on her chair. It was up to me to take charge of the situation. So I squished it. Screaming stopped, story resumed, mission accomplished.
Somewhere between wiping up the bug guts with a paper towel and sitting back down for the end of the storytime I heard:
(sniff. sniffle. SNIFF)
I looked to my left… my right… and there she was. Little Natalie wiping boogers from her runny nose and big tears rolling trails down her cheeks. I slid up next to her and whispered…
“Why are you sad Natalie?”
“That’s… (gasp)…. one of…. (swallow)…. God’s Creatures too-oo!”
And folks I discovered first hand that it is quite possible for a 4 year old to humble an adult to “scum under shoe status” in quite a short time. What could I do but apologize with all of my very, very sorry heart?
So I made sure that The Centipede did not die in vain. Ever since that day, I have single-handedly slid magazine pages under every classroom bug- placed an empty margarine container over every petrified body and gently walked them outside the front doors of school.
And the kids think I’m insane. Especially the boys.
Puh-leeze Miss B – we are the GOD of bugs – and they shall feel our wrath!
I’d be lying if I didn’t admit to wondering: “Why am I doing this? It’s a waste of time, and the kids think I’m bananas.”
But today full circle came when a fourth grader entered my room.
“Miss B, I need a cup.”
“Centipede in the hallway. I’m going to take it out.”
And as I listened, sure enough I heard her teacher in the hallway:
“Kids, back in line! And don’t let Mrs. M. see that- she’ll freak. I mean it! Are you really going to save that sweetie…?”
I strained my ears as I heard her say… “yeah, I got him- c’mere little buddy…”
And I laughed out loud.
Natalie would be 8 years old now. I wonder if she still has the endearing compassion that rubbed off on this “hard hearted” teacher and has since saved approximately a dozen Bug Lives… and now due to exponential growth- even more than that.
From This Brazen Teacher – “A young teacher hoping to retain some idealism”
Kindly contributed to Zen Moments by the author.
Photo from Mr Clean Photography with kind permission
A Whole New Mind: Why Right-Brainers Will Rule the Future
By Daniel H. Pink
“People are often characterized by their strengths. If you’re by-the-numbers and very analytical, you’re branded as a left-brain type. If you’re creative and artistic, you’re a right-brain thinker. And the prevailing wisdom was that in business, the left-brainers rule. That is, until now.
Daniel Pink, author of “A Whole New Mind: Why the Right-Brainers Will Rule the Future” and his newest book, “The Adventures of Johnny Bunko: The Last Career Guide You’ll Ever Need”, senses a change coming. No longer will left brain number crunchers rule the world. It’s time to acknowledge the value creative types bring to the table (and the bottom line)…. ‘Change Nation’“
Book Review From This Brazen Teacher
With kind permission.