...quiet, about a lot of things...

Saturday, July 22, 2006

Sunday Scribblings

Thief
When one of my daughters "borrows" something from the other,a cami or a CD, the offended party always seems to track me down to declare.."SHE TOOK IT...AND SHE DIDN'T EVEN ASK!!!" Truth be told...it's hard to ask sometimes, for what you most dearly want. It's easier to pilfer or borrow...with intent to return. If you ask...the answer could be no...and the more you want this THING...the more likely the answer WILL BE no, is you are female siblings..ages 13 and 16.

The kids I teach in special ed, have all at one time or another...sought to deceive or purloin. One particular little girl, has especially sticky fingers. She is very nimble with her attempts, usually at candy, but sometimes game pcs or play money. Her primary teacher told me once that she systematically emptied a whole package of cough drops from said teachers desk...in one day.

Alas, she is doomed to always be caught. Her little brown eyes always give her away. I just hold out my hand, and she deposits into it what ever ill gotten gain she's taken. This never strikes me as dishonest. She is in first grade, and I see no malicious thought, though other teachers may not agree with me. I see it as an attempt to control her circumstances. I also think she's checking to see who's really paying attention. I think she likes to affect her life, plain and simple. I'm not suggesting it's a great thing, just explainable.

So much of her young life has been thrust upon her. It's hard to play fair..and by ALL the rules. There is no one from which to ask to borrow a "normal Life ". There is no way to earn back what she has never had. So she grabs for trinkets, waits for the inevitable discovery, and perhaps,the validation that she is someone to keep "an eye on". A girls gotta do what a girls gotta do.

Catch more THIEVES at Sunday Scribblings this week....
posted by wendy at 10:08 PM

12 Comments:

It's good that there are compassionate teachers like you out there, who make an effort to understand the reasons for the little girl's (and other students) behaviour.

7/23/06, 2:41 AM  

This is an inspiring peek into your work and compassion

7/23/06, 5:57 AM  

I love your understanding of why a child might take things. You seem to have a great empathy with the children. They're so lucky to have you around.

7/23/06, 6:05 AM  

I'd have to agree with the other comments. It is a teacher such as yourself that due to her empathy can actually have a positive influence on a child such as this little girl and have her blossom into a different type of young lady.

7/23/06, 6:50 AM  

I think you have such a profound insight here into the heart of this little girl. Ususally I think of kids taking things from selfishness but I can see how they might use it to get attention as well. Thanks for sharing this story!

7/23/06, 4:06 PM  

here! here!

empathy and compassion are so under-rated. BRAVO!

i am so new at this blog thing. just thought i'd invite you to my world, since i don't think this site is going to post the right link when it shows my name!

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7/24/06, 7:45 PM  

I love your last paragraph...it's so true (I'm a teacher too!) You've caught the complexities.

7/24/06, 9:14 PM  

What a kind and compassionate teacher you are to be able to see beneath the surface.

7/24/06, 11:02 PM  

*It's easier to pilfer or borrow...with intent to return. If you ask...the answer could be no...and the more you want this THING...the more likely the answer WILL BE no*

I loved this - growing up in a house of three sisters it ceratinly resonated with me (though as the older sister I wasn't always so insightful...)

And a wonderful insight into your work, and I admire your compassion. Great post!

7/25/06, 1:46 AM  

One of my girls (not special ed, but still special, hehe) was a bit like that - only she knew she was being dishonest, but sought to repair it by writing me apologetic notes.

Wtth my little one it was just an attention thing also - a means of seeing that people notice her also.

You sound like an amazing teacher, Wendy!

-Aly

7/25/06, 3:02 AM  

I'm glad this little girl has you in her life.

We all need someone to pay attention to us.

7/26/06, 11:28 AM  

Like so many of the other commenters, my first thought when I read this was "compassion." So often, people rush to judgement--we all need to pay attention to the kind of compassion that you so generously offer up, and start preparing our own hearts to serve the same kind of meal.

At my previous school, I had a student who often took things from me--usually cans of Coke. And she deposited them back in my hands, just the way your little friend does, whenever confronted.

Your lines here--"There is no one from which to ask to borrow a "normal Life ". There is no way to earn back what she has never had."--are a bittersweet reminder of my own little friend, who is now 15 and a mother. I'm grateful for that today.

Excellent post!

7/26/06, 11:40 AM  

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