Sister Assist

The kids are taking a play-writing class. They worked on character development the first week, and this week they are to bring a scene, already written, back to class.

One scene.

Riley’s written two very lengthy ones, and could go on. Seth struggles with one.

He sits at the table, forlorn. He has it in his head, can’t get it on the paper.

Finally, I let him dictate to me and then when we’re finished, I ask him to copy it in his own handwriting. It’s important the boy be able to write if he’s capable of it, and he is.

He starts, then gets teary. It is so much to copy. He’s paralyzed. I am losing patience.

Riley says, “Mom, it’s just that he’s overwhelmed.”

“I know Riley, but he’s not doing anything.” Exasperated, I look at her and say, “Why don’t you help him.”

She goes over to the paper, takes a second sheet and covers up all but the line he is currently writing. Relief washes over him, and he begins to write.

One line at a time.

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8 Responses to Sister Assist

  1. Chris V. says:

    Ah… thank you Riley!!! Wouldn’t have thought of that… I get overwhelmed in a heartbeat… I will use this method….great kids… great parents!!!

  2. naomi says:

    Aww, sweet boy. We did this for Adam for awhile as well. Way to go Riley! Empathetic and resourceful. A powerful combination.

  3. Elizabeth says:

    Sigh. Boys.

    And Riley is an awesome sister.

  4. Amanda says:

    Just think, a couple of years ago that would have been Riley, a couple of years ago it was you covering the words and mopping up the tears – so great to see the change and progress in all of you. 🙂

  5. Jamie says:

    Okay I love all your posts, but this one gave me goosebumps…… I can’t describe how great this was. Thanks for sharing!!!!

  6. jancsnow says:

    Ann Lamott has it right – Bird by Bird (word by word)

  7. kario says:

    I still have to read that way sometimes and I am often amazed at the difference it makes in my head and my nervous system! Bless that girl for knowing what to do and bless you for knowing your own limits and asking her to do it. I’ll bet she felt incredibly empowered. What a terrific result.

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