Sunday, February 21, 2016

A Little Pawsitive Puppy Motivation

I never quite know what will unfold on Friday mornings in 2nd grade. Plan A is reading together with the students, but often there are unexpected treasures and surprises.

There is a little sweetheart in my granddaughter's 2nd grade class whom Chester is especially fond of. I can't explain it. I just enjoy it. This precious little girl with Down syndrome has BIG LOVE for Chester, and no doubt he feels the same about her. When she enters the classroom, no matter what we are in the middle of, Chester looks up, thumps his tail, and heads to greet her. She delights in expressing her love for Chester with abandon. I kid you not, the door could open 4 or 5 or 6 times and Chester doesn't move, but when this little blonde cutie walks through the door, it is a whole different story. 

On most days when Chester's special friend arrives, after doggie hugs and kisses, she easily settles into the classroom routine, then takes her turn to read with Chester. However, on this day, from the moment she entered the room it was clear that she and her support teacher were frustrated. Chester's little friend did not want to do her work today. Apparently the entire morning had been a struggle for teacher and student. Sigh, I understand from experience days like this in the classroom.


After a bit of time, I whispered to her teacher. "Though it's clear there's not time for reading with Chester, IF she finishes her work, perhaps she'd like to walk Chester to the office with me?" The teacher smiled. Chester winked. Honest, he did. 

While pointing to the blank paper on the desk, this kind teacher gently said to her student, "If you finish your work, and do it well, would you like to walk Chester to the office?" The little girl's face softened, her blue eyes focused on Chester, then me. We smiled.

Sometimes, sometimes, the right motivation is all that's needed, especially when it comes wrapped in four fuzzy paws and a waggy tail. Chubby little fingers reached for the pencil, and with determination Chester's buddy began to write. Before you could say bibbety bobbety boo her work was done. And done well. Her teacher breathed a happy sigh of relief. And, with a giant smile, this sweet girl reached for Chester's red leash, and off we trotted to the office.  

......another great day in 2nd grade :)


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