It was the first day of school. Eli had a big breakfast of bacon and eggs, brushed his teeth, and had put on his new shirt, compliments of grandma, then strapped on his empty backpack. Soon it would be full of books and tablets, and pencils, and things he probably never use. but a full backpack is a good one, he mused.
He thought, secretly,’ It’s about time’; for summer had run it’s course. Off he went to catch the bus full of exited middle schooler’s with new shirts and equally empty backpacks.
He had been reminded by his mom “to smile, say yes mam, and thank you. And, don’t take anything at lunch that you are not going to eat”. That had certainly been his plan ever since he was born……she should know that, but she had been his mom ever since he was little ; and, she had a job to do….. he, needing the advice or not.
On arrival at the classroom, Mrs. Fletcher greeted them all individually with applause. Eli thought this was pretty weird, but it did seem that she really wanted them there at least for the moment.
She talked some about what they were going to learn and handed out the books. He glanced at the first one… surprised that he could read all the words. But the subject? What are participles, declaratory sentences, compound sentences, and on and on.
Apart from this; he absolutely had to come to grips with the totally main question of the day: “What is that huge lump on Mrs. Fletcher’s nose ?” He could not stop looking at it.
The day progressed slowly until the last thing of the day ; art. It was his favorite.. Everyone had to come up with a drawing of something in the room. Easy……..he thought; a picture of Mrs. Fletcher, but he could not get the lump on her nose out of his head…..however, he made it GIANT!
As she made the rounds to observe and comment, she came upon Eli’s work. She looked, smiled, and said; “Eli this is sooo special. You are a true artist! “…..then hesitated with ; “Except for the nose. Shouldn’t the lump be a little smaller?”
With that she drew from behind her back her picture that she had drawn. It was Eli’s face complete with a hole in the big smile where his two front teeth used to be. Eli looked at it and laughed; “Isn’t that hole a little BIG ?
Mrs, Fletcher took out her pencil and placed two absolutely perfect teeth in the opening. Her only comment was: “Well, Eli, both of us can only hope….Right?’
Eli set about to erase and make that lump in his picture a LOT smaller. “How’s that” He exclaimed, as he handed it back………feeling much better about the whole thing.
Mrs Fletcher held it to her chest after showing it to the class , many of whom saw the first drawing, as he shared it privately, when she was not looking. She then shared ” Now class, that’s the big lesson to end the day;
“Always tell it …….like it could be”.