Working with five year olds has been a lot of fun, but I have also grown emotionally from this experience. I realized my emotional growth spurt had occurred after an interaction I had with my boyfriend.
“Babe,” he said (yes he really does call me that) “You have a bad habit of leaving the fridge door open.”
Previous to working with children I would have snapped at him and said something like:
“If you see it’s open, then close it!”
Or something to that effect.
Because I have to tie many little shoes, wait for little bodies to “line up” and generally assist these kids with their day-to-day routines, I have become a more patient person. I think one central element involved here is the patient kind of communication used with five year olds. Being direct helps, but remaining sensitive to their feelings is also essential.
I subconsciously used the same sort of communication I use with the kids with my boyfriend.
When he made the remark about the fridge, instead of replying flippantly, I (in all sincerity) said the following:
“Thank you for telling me that! I’ll try not to do it in the future.”
Either I’ve evolved as a human being, or there is something seriously wrong with me.