I was sitting at my "teacher table" today during literacy centers and suddenly realized how needy the kids seemed to be today. Was it because they didn't get enough attention all weekend or was it because they haven't seen me in two days? Either way I decided to try a little experiment.
I wanted to see in five minutes how many times a child would come to me to either ask me a question or tell me something "important". Because in kindergarten everything is "important".
So I set the kitchen timer for 5 minutes, grabbed a pencil and started writing. Here's what I got...
"I'm hungry." (twice)
"I have a mosquito bite and it really itches. Can I go to the nurse?
Am I all done?
I messed up, I need an eraser.
How do you spell zebra?
Why does he get to read a book and I don't?
He said Christian stinks.
Can I get a tissue?
Can I get a piece of paper?
How come he's using black on his rainbow, there aint no (insert teacher cringe) black in a rainbow.
In need a brown crayon.
I have to pee. Can I pee? It's an emergency. I really need to pee!
Jimmy's talking to me.
I need a germ squirt.
The caterpillars are upside down. Can I go tell Miss Frizzle. (named changed to protect the innocent.)
Mrs. C, there's drama at the art table!
Now I know this is enough to drive even the most patient of people over the edge. But you see, we kindergarten teachers have a special "patience gene".
So if I can provide a listening ear and make a child feel listened to and important, I will.
Because a little extra attention is good for all of us.