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Hi.

Welcome to my blog. I document my adventures in the classroom and as a presenter.

Today I was working in a second-grade class pulling students and asking them a comprehension question after a read aloud.  The work was to help inform some coaching work with teachers and I was pulling half the class (the teacher was doing the same with the other half). I pulled a little girl who I knew from reading with and assessment scores, was above grade level.  She's, as we say in New England, wicked smart.  I was excited to chat with her and hear her talk about the book and answer my question.

After she sat down and we chatted for a minute, I asked her the question.  She sat silent.  I waited.  And waited.  And then waited some more.  I didn't time her, but honestly, she must have sat for a good solid minute.  Now I know a minute doesn't sound like a really long time, but when you're simply sitting waiting for an answer to a question, those sixty seconds can feel very long.

Just when I was about to repeat the question or try to give her an out, she opened her mouth, and I kid you not, articulated the most beautiful, perfect answer.  I've been asking the same question to a lot of kids and her answer was simply the best I've heard.  It was textbook.

As I went over the results with the teacher, I reflected on her think time.  We had a wonderful conversation about how kids, and well really adults too, often feel the need to speak immediately when asked a question.  I told her about an article I'd read on interviewing once that urged candidates to take a good thirty seconds to think before answering a question.  Better to have a thoughtful, articulate answer than to simply begin speaking nonsense.

Well, this little girl has this knowledge already.  This is a lesson for children (and adults) - in our instant gratification society, it's not only alright but perhaps sensible to wait, take time to think and compose your thoughts before opening your mouth to speak.

Vocabulary.

Be kind... to yourself.