Smart Cookie

She was one of the last few students in the cafeteria finishing breakfast. A brand new kindergartner, she was doing OK until she tried to peel her banana. She spoke right up, asking for help. She chatted with the teacher a bit in fluent English before getting back to the business of breakfast. She ran into problems again trying to open her cereal and milk carton. She remembered to raise her hand this time to ask for help. I was impressed with how well-spoken she was. Her coffee-with-cream skin, dark eyes and dark hair were clues to her Hispanic heritage. (Half of our new kindergartners are Hispanic, and nearly 100% of them are ELLs.) As she was leaving, I told her that she spoke English very well, and I asked her if she spoke Spanish, too.

“Yes, I do,” she answered.

“You are one smart cookie!” I said.

“I’m a cookie?!?” she giggled, as if that was the funniest thing she ever heard. She took what I said quite literally!

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14 Responses to Smart Cookie

  1. Ramona says:

    Love the way your shared this special morning with a kindergartner with us. And her delight at being a cookie!

  2. Awww. You must have kept a smile for a while after her expression of pure innocent joy.

  3. I love “lost in translation” stories. You capture the confusion well! It is very sweet. šŸ™‚

  4. Erika Victor says:

    What a sweet girl- using all of her tools to get the help she needed. Nicely written. I loved the details of the conversation.

  5. showgem says:

    Wonderful interaction between a sweet girl and an observant and caring adult.

  6. Your post made me smile. How great that both of you started the day with a giggle.

  7. Adrienne says:

    That reminds me of a time I was talking with a first grade girl who was very much like this little girl you describe. She was an avid reader so I saw her in the library a lot. I was taking to her about a book one day and she just looked at me and said, “You are like a cartoon.” I have always hoped she didn’t mean that literally.

  8. mbhmaine says:

    Cute! The part of me that isn’t grieving the fast approaching end of summer is anticipating conversations like this with my incoming first graders!

  9. arjeha says:

    What a great story. Brought a smile to my face.

  10. Terje says:

    Your slice made me smile. Sweet kindergarten stories are delicious.

  11. Tara Smith says:

    Sweet story, sweet kid!

  12. marc-aureled says:

    What a sweet slice! I enjoy lunch duty with the K/1 in my school (I’m a 5th grade teacher) because of these types of conversations and situations. I need to remember to try and capture some of these in my writing!

  13. Lori Sheroan says:

    That’s precious! Thanks for giving me something to smile about!!! Tomorrow is our first day; and I’m feeling a little harried and hopeless. It’s also my younger son’s first day of high school. I really needed a smile. Thanks!!

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