Posts Tagged ‘life skills’
New Year’s Day was bitter cold out, too cold to ice skate, or to go sledding, or even take a short walk. School was closed. So any “Can Do”who could catch a ride was welcome for a play date at Orrie’s house.
Grandpa John and Grandma Maureen had come by to help Orrie’s mom with table games and serving snacks. Willie asked, “Grandpa John why do adults make New Year’s Resolutions”? Before Grandpa John could answer, Annie asked,”What are resolutions anyway?”
Grandpa John stopped handing out fruit and sat down at the table with the “Can Dos.” All eyes were on him as he thought of the best way to explain what a resolution is.
He cleared his throat and began by saying, “Well, resolutions are kind of like promises to do things that you need or want to do. It’s about doing things that you need to do but may not having being doing such a good job about doing so far.
For instance, let’s take sharing. You know that sharing is usually the right thing to do, but it is hard to do. So, you might make a resolution, a promise to yourself or to someone else that you will be better at sharing.”
The “Can Dos” were all quiet for awhile, then Nellie asked,”Why do people make resolutions on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day”? Grandpa John smiled and answered. “That’s a very good question Nellie. The new year is seen as a new beginning, a time to begin again. A time to do things you want and need to do. So people promise themselves and their family to make changes in themselves and their lives.”
“Hmmm,” said Arthur J. “Maybe we should each make a resolution for the new year.” Hector shook his head. “Not me,” he said. “I like myself just the way I am. I don’t think I need to change a thing about me.”
Maria, his sister, tossed her head and said, “Think again brother. There are a few things you need to change… like being late for school a lot and using my stuff without asking.” Hector turned red and answered, “Okay, I’ll stop taking your stuff without asking but I can’t make two resolutions, so I’ll have to wait on promising not to be late for school.” Everyone laughed.
Grandpa John said, “Let’s go around the table and each make a resolution. I’ll start. “I promise to help Grandma Maureen around the house more.” Grandma Maureen gave Grandpa John a big smile and said,”You heard that children. You are my witnesses, he promised to help me more.” The “Can Dos” all laughed.
Then it was their turns to make resolutions. Nellie promised to help Grandma Hattie with the housework. Orrie promised to turn off his computer each night the first time he was asked to do so. Willie promised to empty the trash without moaning and groaning about it. Kathy promised to share with her sister Annie more and fight less. Arthur J. promised to help his brother with his math homework when he was having a problem.
Did you make New Year’s resolutions? Are you going to make any resolutions? What do you promise to do?
The day after Christmas found several of the “Can Dos” ice skating on the ice rink behind the community center.
Jay has his own skates and is a good skater. He learned to ice skate when he was three, before he and his family came to “Can Do” Street. Annie and Kathy are also good ice skaters, but Nellie and Willie and Arthur J. are beginner level skaters.They need to take lessons and get help from the other “Can Dos’ who know how to skate.
Here are some ice skating tips from Jay, Annie and Kathy to help you with learning to ice skate:
- Don’t push. If you are not doing well, wait a while and try again.
- Bring a pocketful of small stuffed animals and if the rink’s not crowded practice bending over to pick them up.
- Play Red Light, Green Light to practice starting and stopping.
- Make sure to lace or cinch your boots tightly. If your foot wobbles in its skate boot, you won’t have any stability on the ice.
- Unless you are playing ice hockey, don’t wear knee pads. Instructors say they restrict moving too much.
- To improve your balance, don’t look at your feet and hold your arms out in front, as if putting them on a table.
- Grab your knees if you feel a fall coming on. This will lower your center of gravity and may prevent the fall.
Keep practicing and you will get good at it.
Miss Pat noticed that Hector came in from recess with dirty hands and an open snack, which he continued to eat with his dirty hands. Oh no, thought Miss Pat, all those germs going into his mouth!
Before Miss Pat could speak to him, he scooped some snack with his hands and gave it to Willie, who put it in his mouth.
UGH, thought Miss Pat. No matter how many times I talk to them about when and why it is important to wash their hands…they forget. They forget about how germs are spread.
I know, she thought, it is time to visit the US Center for Disease Control, CDC, website that has a great graphic showing children how germs are spread.
Miss Pat called the class to order and asked everyone to focus on the White Board. Then she clicked on:
The “Can Dos” stared at the graphic from the CDC. They couldn’t believe their eyes! It was so easy just to hand germs to others! It was also so easy to get germs from others who did wash their hands often.
The class got quiet. Then Hector and a few others raised their hands and asked to go wash their hands.
Great, thought Miss Pat. They got the message from the CDC graphic…it is so easy to spread germs!
Kathy went back to reading the story that Miss Pat gave them as an assignment in class. A little while later, Kathy looked over again to see if Maria was back in her seat…no Maria. Now she was worried that maybe something had happened to Maria . Did Miss Pat know where she was? Did Miss Pat even know that Maria was not in class?
“That’s funny,” said Kathy. Miss Pat looked up and said, “Kathy, are you talking when you are supposed to be reading?” Kathy looked up and answered,”Sorry Miss Pat, I was talking to myself.” Miss Pat smiled and said, “Is it something you want to share?” Kathy shook her head no and said, “Can I come to your desk and ask you something in private?” Miss Pat shook her head yes and Kathy got up and went to Miss Pat’s desk.
In a low voice Kathy said, “I am worried about Maria. She hasn’t been in her seat since we got back from lunch. We ate lunch together and she didn’t say she was going anywhere after lunch. May I check the girls room to make sure she isn’t sick?” Miss Pat smiled at Kathy and said, “You are a good friend to worry about Maria like that, but there is no need to worry. Maria is just fine. She had to go somewhere.”
“Where did she go,” asked Kathy. “That is something you will have to ask Maria,” answered Miss Pat.
Later, as Maria and Kathy walked home from school together, Kathy asked Maria where she went after lunch. Maria got all red in the face and looked like she was about to cry. “What’s wrong?” asked Kathy. Maria started to cry and said,”If I tell you, do you promise not to tell anyone?”
Kathy nodded yes and Maria said, “I am having trouble with reading, so I go out of our class to another room for extra help with reading.”
Kathy said, “Wow, for a minute there you really had me scared. I thought something was really wrong, because you were crying and made me promise not to tell.”
Maria answered, “I don’t like needing extra help. I’m afraid the other kids will make fun of me.” Kathy nodded that she understood. Then she said, “Maria, you are good at lots of things, you don’t need to feel bad about needing help with reading. Everybody needs help sometime with something. Besides, no one is going to make fun of you.