Every Tuesday, I help with Writer’s Workshop in Bea’s classroom. And every Tuesday, I leave after an hour with a greater appreciation toward all kindergarten teachers. Controlled chaos is putting it mildly but somehow Mrs. M is able to help twenty five-year-olds create books about Nocturnal Animals, using exclamation points and onomatopoeias when appropriate.
Bea is a quiet, concientious kid at a rowdy table. She is constantly battling boys who refuse to give a silent five or take bunny breaths to calm down. One table over is filled with girls who follow directions, share crayons, and get their work done.
Part of me wants to ask why Bea is stuck with the wild kids. Part of me knows exactly why because I inflicted that same spot to my good, quiet kids when I was teaching. Sometimes you need to know that one person at the table will do what they’re supposed to do.
Where’s the justice in this? Shouldn’t all the good kids be together, encouraging each other academically? Shouldn’t all the rowdy kids be together, fending for themselves? In some ways, I think Bea’s school experience would be better if she were at a table (or in a classroom) filled with kids who care as much as she does.
But that would defeat the point of sending her to our diverse neighborhood school. Not only is it culturally diverse, but it’s academically, socially, and economically diverse. When I talk about diversity, I need to remember that it means everything.
Friends were visiting from Zimbabwe and we took them to the fall festival. At one point, as we were standing in the eternally long line for the bounce house, Susan exclaimed, This is what heaven looks like!
This comment gave me pause. It’s true. Heaven, wherever it is and whatever it actually looks like, will be filled with diversity. It will be filled with people who look different, who speak different languages, who see God differently, who learn differently, and who interact with life differently. That’s the beauty of God loving all the little children, regardless of appearance or life experience.
I’m sure there will be a time when being at the wild table will be a true detriment rather than a life experience. We’ll have to evaluate our own values and make a game plan. Until then, I’m thankful that every single day Bea gets to experience a little slice of heaven as she writes about bats and owls.
Where is a place you’ve seen heaven here on earth? What does it look like to you?
This post is Day 12 of the Write 31 Days Challenge. I’m spending the month of October writing about the Backyard Justice. You can find the entire series over at my Backyard Justice page.