Fly on the Wall
If nothing else, I know with a fair degree of certainty, that three days a week, I am going to smile. Actually, it’s more likely that I will literally Laugh-Out-Loud, probably several times during each of those three day’s and undoubtedly, I’ll get what I need to tweet something profoundly wise or funny (on another site). Three days a week I am a fly on the wall.
I work in a small, private, progressive school which is in a big, beautiful Victorian house. I am not a teacher. I work in the office, in the “Downstairs” part of the house where the “Downstairs” kids, who roam from room to room, are three and four years of age. Three days a week, I am privileged to be able to peek out and watch the wee ones introduce themselves, to themselves, through the beautifully ornate, floor to ceiling mirror embedded in the wall right outside the office. Even better, I hear things, like their outspoken curiosity, all day long. I’m the fly on the wall.
A few weeks ago a group of these pre-schoolers crowded around a “mystery” box. They looked at it, touched it, poked it. Finally, a three-year old girl exclaimed:
“Maybe there’s a little serk inside!” When a teacher asked what a serk was, she said, “I don’t know what that is but it’s fun to say!”
Often I overhear them making more sure-footed statements as in this sports commentary between two four-year old boys:
“Sometimes the Jets win and the Redskins tie cause they’re twisted together”, which was countered by, “Well, my favorite sport is …who gets to the finished line first.”
The office is next to a (single) child’s bathroom. No matter who or what gender the occupant is, that door is nearly always open. So when a three-year old girl peered in on a four-year old boy in the midst of peeing, there was this little exchange:
“What’s that?” she asked. “It’s a penis.” he replied matter-of-factly. Then he added just as matter-of-factly, “Only girls have bajamas.”
If it’s not a statement or a query, it’s an apology or an aspiration, like when a four-year old girl saw three older “Upstairs” kids running in the hallway, she remarked:
“Those Upstairs kids are crazy! When I am in the Upstairs here, I’m going to be crazy too!”
Or my new personal favorite, when one four-year old boy looked into the face of another rather astonished four-year old boy and said most sincerely:
“Sorry. I guess I should have asked first if it was okay to lick you.”
The noise level outside the office gets pretty high sometimes but it never bothers me and I never close the door. I love being the “fly on the wall”, listening, laughing and re-tweeting what I hear from the little people. They speak their truth, unabashed and with confidence.
They make me smile which makes it a whole lot easier to take the world on!