(I’m forgoing today’s prompt because I don’t want to think about the worst trip I ever took.)
I’m currently sitting in my school’s cafeteria. This week was Common Assessment Week, which means all of the students in every grade level were taking the same assessment on the same topic on the same days. My students are frequently absent, and I told them I would be staying after school today for anyone who needs to make the Common Assessment up. Almost all of my students showed up, and one student in particular blew me away.
This student attends a vocational program in the afternoon. This student leaves halfway through my class everyday, and I haven’t really had the opportunity to bond with this student as a result. Today, this student showed up after school, out of breath, apologetic, and with a young child, a younger sibling, in tow.The younger sibling can’t be more than 5 or 6 years old. After 15 minutes of watching the sibling try to behave as my student worked on an essay, I dug into my bag and offered the sibling a half used sheet of robot stickers, some highlighters, and a piece of lined paper. The kid’s face lit up, and in between excitement it was explained their family doesn’t have stickers at home, that they only play with stickers “once in awhile.” My student bashfully explained that they only get stickers on the sibling’s birthday, and that stickers are a treat.
After the student finished the assignment, the younger sibling started to hand me the stickers back. I said to keep them, and you would’ve thought I was Santa Claus. There was so much excitement in that child’s eyes, and it truly warmed my heart. My heart also broke a little to realize that stickers are considered a rare treat to some. My childhood was covered with stickers… I can’t imagine being a little kid without them.
I was having a rough afternoon today. I was feeling pretty down after growing frustrated with one of my classes, and this interaction made me feel incredibly grateful for the opportunities I have had in life. Student teaching in the district I’m in has been a huge blessing, and, sometimes, the littlest interactions are validations that I’m doing what I should be doing with my life. Making a difference makes a difference, no matter how small the difference may be.
Plus, ya know, robot stickers are pretty freakin’ awesome.
Be jealous of Robbie the Robot, my new friend on my Macbook shell.