Their teacher invited small groups of children to walk over to the bin containing t-shirts and put one one before the painting project began. I sat next to the bin, ready just in case someone needed help. W reached in and pulled on the first one he touched, tossed it aside and proceeded to take off his sweatshirt. Z looked around the room to see which ones her classmates were wearing, muttered something about her favorite one already gone, sighed, and pulled out a yellow one. She announced loudly that it was her new favorite. A wasn’t sure she wanted to take off her coat, but realized quickly that pulling a t-shirt over her coat wouldn’t be easy. She headed to her cubby to hang up the coat and then came back to the bin to consider her choices. G came over quietly, said nothing, took the t-shirt on the top and headed right back for his seat. A was still debating. Three or four others came and went. A was still debating. I asked her to make a choice and head to her seat so she could be ready for directions. She reached her arm in and chose one from the bottom of the bin, then asked for help putting it on.
Mostly I just sat watching and listening. So much to learn from just watching and listening. I don’t know these children well. But in just a few minutes today I know them better.