January 19: ┬áToday was a good day for niceness because I spent the morning at Joe’s school. Those fourth-graders do wonders for my cynical self. I saw a little girls compliment another girls boots. A boy lovingly teased a friend about is long hair. One girl helped another on her book report since they’d both read the same book. A group of boys read together, helping one of their group sound out the harder words. One boy offered to share his snack with me.

The secretary knows every kid by name and helped me get the temperamental laminator going. She is a woman of many skills. A fifth-grader held the door open for me when my hands were full.

Joe’s teacher, Miss D, had me make copies. That may not seem noteworthy except that I was making 10 copies of this, 20 of that 5 of another. Why? Because different kids are learning at different rates, and she tailors her teaching and homework to each and every one of those 25 kids. She borrows materials from a fifth-grade teacher, scours the net and flat makes lessons up.

The class is working on book reports right now, so after copying I checked in with each group to make sure they were getting key points, while she worked with a group at the back of the room that was a little behind. Her patience is endless, and the kids flourish under her attention. When the GT kids came back from GT class, their classmates caught them up.

Today was my day for the co-op kids — a day of controlled chaos that I love. Our co-op is made up of five families, 9 kids, 7 of whom are currently in the co-op (one is too young; one graduated to middle school this year and so takes care of herself, though she came and played today, which was great because I really miss her). We have a schedule for who has the kids each morning and afternoon, so no one needs to pay for before- or after-school care and so the kids help form a real neighborhood and just play.

Co-op day is also a good day for niceness. The older kids waited for the youngest. They played a great game of puppy piranha (I’m not clear on the rules, but scratching one behind the ears means you can get it to do your de-fleshing bidding). They help each other with homework, make sure the littlest can reach the chips.

Jason’s younger brother took him to a pro basketball game tonight — a rare treat. So Joe and I had the evening to ourselves. For once (FOR ONCE, Joe would say), I turned off the computer until just a few minutes ago and we just hung out. We ordered pizza, watched a new show on TV that was pretty awesome and will definitely make into the rotation, played some video games and just talked. I really (REALLY) need to do that more often.

Today, I am hard-pressed to think of anything not nice that I saw. I see no reason to do any such pressing. Instead, I am just going to go to bed, happy to live among all these amazing children who show me how to be without even thinking about it.

Category: Niceness
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Cindie Geddes

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