SOLC 2018–Day 6: A Moment in the Cafeteria


March 2018 SOLC–Day 6
A huge thank you to Two Writing Teachers for all that they do to create an amazing community of writers and a safe, welcoming space to write, learn, share and grow.

On lunch duty Friday, I was racing around the cafeteria, encouraging students to finish up lunch and keeping a loose lid on the bubbling chaos.

“Hey, Mrs. Hogan. Do you want to hear a joke?” B. called out as I rushed by him, bee-lining toward a rambunctious table.

Putting on the brakes, mentally and physically, I took a deep breath and responded,  “Sure, B.” Then, remembering my OLW for the year (pause), I took another breath and actually sat down on the stool next to him. 

“Who’s the best animal at playing baseball?” he asked me.

I thought for a moment. “Ugh, I should know this one, but I can’t think of it,” I said. “I give up. Who is the best animal at playing baseball?”

“A bat!” he crowed, eyes lit with laughter. “You know, like a baseball bat and a bat bat.”

“Oh, that’s right,” I said, smiling. “That one’s a classic! Do you have another one?”

He grinned at me. “Why don’t you want to play games with jungle cats?”

“Wait! I think I know this one,” I said. He graciously gave me some think time. All around us children chatted and laughed and knives and forks clattered on trays. Finally, I suggested, “Because they’re always lion?”

“No! Because they’re cheetahs!” he said.

We both laughed.

“Thanks, B.” I said, but I didn’t immediately get up to rush away. I just sat by him for a few minutes longer, enjoying the moment, pausing in the midst of the day.

18 thoughts on “SOLC 2018–Day 6: A Moment in the Cafeteria

  1. I LOVE how your OLW slowed you down and reminded you to take a moment to enjoy a child. It’s those moments…people remember how you made them feel.

    BTW, I like your response as much as cheetahs!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. alexpapp says:

    You add the perfect amount of description and narrative to your dialogue. I felt like I eavesdropped on your interaction from across the cafeteria, and it brought a smile to my face.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. cindaroo42 says:

    Gosh isn’t lunch duty all about “keeping a loose lid on a bubbling chaos”? It’s those small moments where we pause that make our days so specials- aren’t we lucky we work kids?

    Liked by 1 person

  4. mbush17 says:

    I love this!! I love how you registered to take a breath and sit with the student. That probably made his day!! You’re an amazing teacher I can tell!

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Ah, the gift of time. The gift of individual attention. If teachers and parents just acted on what they know that that is what kids want. Not efficiency, but the strong message that they matter as a person.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Alice Nine says:

    From your opening “keeping a loose lid on the bubbling chaos” you had my hooked. Love the reminder to “pause” and enjoy in the present moment.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. jcareyreads says:

    This was a fun slice. It’s these moments that matter. The moments to connect. Your OLW is serving you well.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. JenniferM says:

    Love that you took a minute to really enjoy him! It’s so easy to feel like we are “too busy” for moments like this, when sometimes they are the moments that matter the most. (And I’m sure you felt recharged afterwards, right?)

    Liked by 1 person

  9. Aida says:

    It’s really funny post! I’ll try to give those riddles to my student.


  10. Aida says:

    It’s a funny post. I’ll try to give those riddles to my students 😀


  11. ureadiread says:

    You have great connections with kids! That pause really makes a difference in feeling heard.


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