Little pink frogs
On Mondays I get to have the pleasure of hanging out with two fourth graders who I’m going to call Mason and Cory. They are two of my favorite kids that I get to help with reading. I can’t say exactly why, but they really need my help and they’re a lot of fun. Their reading skills are very low – in fact, they’re practically non-readers. Their attention often wanders from the task at hand as well.
Whenever they see me, they always have something that they want to tell me. They tell me about all of their scrapes and scratches. “Did I show you my elbow? I scraped it falling off my bike,” or ”My cousin hit me yesterday.”
They show concern for my well being and make suggestions for things that I should do. “You’re not married? Are you lonely?” or “Have you ever ridden a dirt bike? I have. You should do it.”
They are sometimes humorous when I help them with their reading. Sometimes they make completely random guesses about what certain words are or what the answer to a question is. Cory will get this questioning “Huh, huh, how ’bout this one?” look on his face which is both funny and unfortunate.
They show me all of the new knick knacks that they have aquired. One day Cory or Mason (I don’t remember who was the owner because they both fiddled with it) showed me his Chinese handcuffs. Another day Mason showed me his eraser puzzle, which was pretty cool, I must say.
The other day Cory came over with a little hot pink frog with a tab at the back that makes it so that you can make the frog hop. He showed it to me.
“You can have this. It jumps like this.”
“Where’d you get it?”
“I found it in my desk. You can have it.”
I decided to accept his gift. Because A: I don’t like to refuse children’s gifts and B: Lord knows, Cory does not need another distraction at his desk.
However, I have hit upon a problem.
When I got back to the community center, I pulled the little pink frog from my bag and put it on my desk.
And then, it started distracting me. Apparently I’m not much better than Cory. I’ll be sitting there, brainstorming lesson plan ideas, when WHOOSH! out my hand rushes. And POP! up the frog jumps. And then I fiddle with it. I make it hop from one side of the desk to the other. I accidentally make it hop off of the desk. I examine its pink plastic body. I roll it around it in my fingers.
Maybe my partner in crime Mike (Well, he’s kind of the boss of me so maybe “partner” isn’t the correct term. He is the ringleader - and I am his minion.) should confiscate the little pink frog from me.
Naw, never mind.
He doesn’t need any distractions either.
And the little pink frog is distracting.
Elizabeth L. is a long-term volunteer at CAP’s Eagle Child and Family Development Center. She is a member of the McCreary Volunteer Community.