Martin told me all about the fit he threw on his field trip. His class visited Walmart to learn about buying things in stores. (I guess they also could have learned about oppressive wages and outrageous pricing tactics, but maybe that’s just me.) We sent a dollar along with Martin so that he could buy an apple. As with his trips to the grocery store, Martin picked up an apple and began to eat it. At the grocery store, the cashiers let him eat the apple while we shop and then we pay for it at the register. Not so at Walmart. Martin’s teachers asked him to wait, which was perfectly reasonable. But Martin threw a fit.
The thing that amazes me is that Martin told me the whole story. He told me about picking out the apple. He told me that his teacher asked him to wait to eat it. He told me that he started to eat it. He told me that the teacher asked him to stop and that he began to “have tears.” He told me that he threw a fit and that the teacher took him out to the bus to wait for the other kids. He told me all these things. This is a kid who could hardly answer “yes or no” questions a year ago.
He also told me he was still upset when he returned to school, that he pushed over a chair and stubbed his toe when he tried to kick it. “My toe is all gray,” he said. His toe wasn’t gray, but I think that was Martin’s way of telling me that his toe hurt. He told me that his teacher talked to him about kicking things and that she “she took away four computers,” which means he lost some of the computer time (measured in little computer pictures) that he had formerly earned.
He told me all of this. And he even teared up again during the telling.
I’m sad Martin had to go back to his bus and hurt his toe and lost computer time. But I’m thrilled he could relate such details, that he could tell me his feelings, and that he doesn’t seem to hold a grudge against his teacher for her very reasonable efforts to maintain order. So often I feel like Martin will never catch up in the realm of language, that he will always struggle to communicate. But yesterday proved to me just how much progress he is making.
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