The toddlers at the child care center I work at giving me many reminds of very old life lessons.Here is one, I call, the Parable of Snack Time.
“Snack time!” I said.
Twelve toddlers look up from what they were doing. Some start chanting “snake time!” Others drop their toys and waddle or crawl their way to an empty chair. Once all the children are sitting down and the tables are cleared of blocks, I begin to pass out today’s snack: Gold fish crackers and green beans.
After everyone has their snacks and water bottles, I seat down with them and talk with my coworker, Ms. Z. Ms. Z and I make sure to demonstrate what conversation should look like and how to seat in chairs. We ask the children questions about their day and so forth. Soon, there were empty snack plates and many still hungry children.
I get up to pass out more snacks. After the last child received their portion, I asked, “does anyone need anymore food?”
“More snack-y plwese,” said a little girl, name Mary.
I looked down at Mary’s plate. It was full. She hadn’t touched her snack all afternoon.
“Finish your snack, Mary,” I said.
“More snack-y!” she cried.
I pointed to her pile. She, in turn, pointed to the bag of cheesy goldfish.
“Don’t worry, I’ll give you more when yu are done.”
And that was when the tantrum began. She yelled and screamed for more goldfish. She the her arms left and right. Before she knew it, all her snack-y was all over the floor and Ms. Z intervened.
“Mary, you had snack, but now it is all on the floor. Come here and sit with me until you can calm down.”
After guiding a screaming Mary to Ms. Z, I swept up the rest of snack. By the time everyone was done with snack, Mary finally calmed down and I sat with her as she ate her new serving of goldfish and green beans.
You tell me in the comments.