Working with kids as they begin sixth grade is actually delightful sometimes. I’ve discovered that all I need to do is give them a big, warm smile and maybe a high-five. No matter how cool they are, how tough they are, or how angry at me they thought they were, they just can’t resist. These adorable little smiles just start in their eyes and sneak into the corners of their mouths. They respond so quickly and so openly to love it’s just unbelievable. Give them a couple good smiles in a row and they’re putty in your hands.
A girl asked me yesterday why I smile so much. She wondered, very honestly, if it was hurting the muscles in my face. I asked her if she wished I wouldn’t smile so much, and she gasped in horror and started vigorously shaking her head no. Then she told me, “It’s just weird. It looks like you’re really happy working with us and maybe happy with everything in your life.”