Wednesday, June 2, 2010

The Greatness of Kids

Today was Jordan's 5th grade graduation.
All the usual stuff was happening.
The principal spoke, then class by class they got up and stood at the far wall for their names to be called so they could shake hands and get their graduation certificate.
Each grade stood and waited.
Everyone's name was called.
There was clapping, a few hoots and hollers from family members.
The line was almost through.

Then one name in particular was called
and all of those 5th grade kids erupted into the loudest cheers and yells. 
So much clapping and woo-hooing.
I looked at the boy crossing the front of the gym.
He didn't seem any different from the other kids,
except that he got a little confused about where to walk.
His teacher gave him a huge side hug and then had to direct him where the aisle was to get back to his seat.
And walking all down that aisle kids were giving him hi-fives and patting him on the back.
Still cheering.

Then I realized, this was the special education boy Jordan had told me about.
He sees you but doesn't really see you.
If he doesn't know you he'll ignore you.
He had to work really hard.
But, he was in a normal class with the other kids,
working really hard just like they did.

And it was so wonderful to see the camaraderie, to see how proud the entire 5th grade was of this boy...
to see that slight smile at the corner of his lips as he hi-fived some of his classmates
and seemed to not see the others.

I know that teasing and cruelty exist.
But, they didn't today.
And that those who are a little more challenged in our society can be seemingly ignored.
But not today.

Today I saw the greatness of kids.
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