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Books and kids

When I left Japan more than a decade ago, it felt natural standing in front of any classroom. Not so today!

Today I read Dr. Seuss books to a classroom of second graders. 20 sets of second grade eyes turned toward me so that I fretted, “Was volunteering really such a good idea?!”

I quickly found my groove. I read two books, eliciting laughter when I used funny voices, before exiting to a chorus of thank-yous. “I liked that book!” shouted one boy as I stepped back into the hallway and toward the rest of my day.

I grinned my whole way back to the car. Comfortable or not, natural or not, I was briefly able to combine two of my favorite things: books and kids. No matter which way I look at it, that made my morning a win!

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Categories: Books, Teaching Tags: , , ,
  1. March 2, 2017 at 1:15 pm

    Volunteering is a great way to make a real difference! Is there any way to help teach kids to read, rather than just reading to them? Every Wednesday morning for several years, I went around 4th grade classrooms to work with the “slower” students on reading skills, though, to be honest, I think the most important thing I taught is “There’s no such thing as a ‘dumb’ question.”

    • March 4, 2017 at 6:16 am

      That’s something I’d love to do a little further down the road! While the boys are still little and my commute long, most volunteering will be standalone hours here and there.

      I totally agree about the most important lesson. It’s so important to say this aloud, and often, because of how many other indicators children (and adults) receive indicating that there are. Even with Li’l D, we recently realized that just saying once “we care about your input, not the output” was not enough. When testing is prevalent and teachers are “graded” on that testing, it’s a message Anthony and I have to express often. Since we realized this, we can see Li’l D’s worries easing. So, yep: good to say these gentler reminders often, to offset everything said outside our reach.

      (“Could I please have wipes, sir?!” Littler J asked while I was typing this. So cute.)

  2. March 2, 2017 at 1:34 pm

    And isn’t it lovely when your wins give wins to others. I suspect the whole class had a winning morning.

    • March 4, 2017 at 6:17 am

      Their laughter made me think so! I loved how my reading with Littler J gave me stories to tell. I read to the class Littler’s favorite stories, creating lovely connections of all kinds in a few minutes of school reading. ♥

  3. March 2, 2017 at 7:03 pm

    A fantastic win for sure!! ❤

  4. March 7, 2017 at 6:37 am

    You brave woman!

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