After the email from Bill yesterday asking how/when do you engage in meaningful conversations and foster a stronger classroom community? (seriously, please help Bill out and read below and post your replies…) I was reminded of this post from last year. I woke this morning to a surprise snow day so one more day of reposting from my first year. We should be back tomorrow and I will begin writing new entries. I’m actually missing my itty bitty friends at this point.

This week, I’ve noticed my buddy Chris seemed a little more quiet and sensitive than usual. He’s a gentle and shy boy, but something was up. After a few days of asking him if anything was wrong (his reply, “No, I’m fine”) I figured I’d do something.

“Chris, how would you like me to be your lunch buddy today?” I whispered to him while he was working this morning.

He just looked at me. What was a lunch buddy? I knew that’s what he was thinking. Isn’t if funny how you learn to figure out what the real hushed ones are thinking from just a look?

“I’d like to come with you to lunch and eat with you… would you like that?” I asked.

He began to nod and I saw the glimmer of a grin. I haven’t seen that smile in some time.

When I announced to the class I would be joining Chris for lunch in the cafeteria he appeared to be on top of the world.

I stood with him in line, helped him with his mustard packet, cleaned the mustard off his sleeve from helping him with it, and basically let him know, I’m your teacher… you may not be able to verbalize something is wrong, but I know… I care… and I’m going to try and help you anyway I can.