The other students in my “Walking Dead” class (see yesterday’s post) had to learn a little something about being accepting. Every one of my special student’s writing started off, “So, we left off yesterday on season _, episode _.” Every student in there knew that it was a small miracle for this kid to write anything, let alone long missives about one topic that were very well-organized. I grew tired of their not-so-subtle moans when he would start to read. I wanted them to be more respectful of this young man and the struggle it was for him to get to this point. So one day, I wrote and shared this:
“Hardly anyone understands why I am so bothered by disrespect. When people can’t simply treat each other with courtesy, instead of always reacting with such negativity. Why should it bother you if I want to write about, say, my horse everyday? All you have to do is listen-or even just sit there and appear to listen. There is no need to make faces or unkind noises. I am not hurting you. Let’s just all show a little kindness because we can all use a bit more of that in our lives. So, make it your goal to be kind, even if you don’t like me.
Jeez, we are all human after all.”
Since then, the murmurs have ceased, and we all look forward to the daily epistle. If fact, when I made the new deal about writing on my prompt twice a week and he is doing that, some of the other students complained that they missed an episode! Not to fear, he will catch us up the next day by writing double. And now, if I happen to be gone a day, he storms into my room the next day demanding to know where I was! You gotta love teaching.