Monday, March 17, 2014

What Really Matters

In our school we spend a lot of time learning to use time well. We have speedy transitions. Kids have been taught to follow instructions quickly. When I visit other schools I am amazed at how speedy we get things moving in comparison.

And then, sometimes it all comes to a screeching halt. Today one of my students came to school late. Clearly, he hadn't had a good morning. He slammed his books down. He threw his backpack into his locker and he sat down with a thud. We had gym first thing, so we got lined up and off we went. At the gym doors he stopped me. 

With big tears in his eyes he said, "Mrs. Ackroyd, this is the worst day of my life."
"Why?!" I asked.
"My grandpa died last night."

He lives with his grandpa. He was in his 80s. He hadn't been really sick. He said he just stopped breathing.

It broke my heart! His parents probably sent him to school because there was a lot going on at home and maybe it was just easier to have him be at school. I believe it is really important for kids to be involved in the grieving process. Suddenly all our efficiencies went out the window. A couple girls in the class made him a card. We all sat at the carpet and talked about dying.

It was humbling.

I love these kids. My heart beaks when their heart breaks.

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