Today was my first day back in elementary library land. The kids were surprisingly calm and attentive – we should have two weeks off about every two weeks! My kindergartners remembered how to log in to the computer without much prompting, and that’s a major victory for them! Though one of the littlest boys kept calling my name saying, “I need hulp.” Later on, a little girl in this same class told me when she was checking out her library book, “I have a new daddy.” I wasn’t for sure what to say in response to this, so I asked her, “Is he nice?” And she so sweetly said, “Yes, he’s nice. But my old daddy wasn’t nice and did some bad things.” It made my heart sad to know she has already experienced the cruelties of life at such a young age. While I’m waxing philosophic about what kids say, here are a few of my favorite little people anecdotes that I haven’t yet shared.
Before Christmas, the other librarian and I were reading a book to a 2nd grade class, and somehow the conversation centered around eating and digesting food. The other librarian said, “And after you eat…well, you know what happens” (hoping they would keep their comments of what happens next inside their head). But since we’re dealing with 2nd graders, one little boy piped up and said, “You P-O-O-P.” He was so polite not to say the word “poop” and thought it would be better to literally spell it out for us.
Thinking of spelling, that same day, I was helping a class of 4th graders work on a PowerPoint that contained fun facts about themselves. One boy was typing out a list of his hobbies, one of which was an interest he had in rappers. However, when he typed the word “rapper” he left out one of the “p”s in the word. He thankfully called me over before he attempted to get on the Internet and do a search for what he thought was the word rapper, when in fact, his search results would have produced a totally different result (though they probably would have been blocked). His teacher and I kindly helped him add another “p” to his word so that his Google search would be school appropriate, and then exchanged a little smile behind the boy’s back.
The next week, a class of 1st graders was checking out books and one of the little boys told me, “I think I just threw up in my mouth a little bit.” I asked him if he was okay and he proceeded to tell me, “Yeah. I swallowed it, but it’s not gross.” When I told his teacher what he said, she said the medicine he takes in the afternoon might make him sick, so I maybe should have taken him a little more seriously. I’m sure he heard this snide comment before somewhere at home or on T.V., but his quick, dry wit just about cracked me up.
Today I saw this same little boy on his way to class and asked him if he was glad to be back. He looked up at me, grinned, and said, “Oh yeah! I just love learning!” So sweet.