The Core Dump

A strong conviction that something must be done is the parent of many bad measures

[By Nic Lindh on Tuesday, 07 June 2005]

The art of listening

Andrea is a good day care child—happy to be around other children, able to stick up for herself, and in general a little ray of sunshine. But everybody has their good and their bad days, and for a little while she has been running some kind of virus or infection leading to some stomach problems and a nasty, wet cough. So she wasn’t in her best form one day, and threw a major temper tantrum.

When a child spins out of control, the child is taken out of the classroom and made to spend some time with the day care facility director; the idea is that the child is taken away from whatever overloaded her circuits and has a chance to compose herself.

The classroom teacher told me what had happened when I picked up Andrea, so we talked about the little incident over dinner.

When asked if she had visited Miss April (the director), she said yes.

“Was she nice?”

Big, wide-eyed headshakes.

“What did she say?”

Andrea looked down at her food, then down at the floor for so long I thought she couldn’t remember or had lost interest in the topic, but then her whole little body sagged in a completely tragic manner, and she mumbled, while keeping her eyes down at the floor, “I listen to teacher.”

It’s never fun to get sent to the principal’s office…

Soundtrack: “The Hong Kong Triad” by Thievery Corporation itunes

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