Cookie Share

round biscuit with heart jelly in center

Photo by Pixabay on


“Now it’s my turn to ask you a question,” she said. “And you have to answer.”

“Fair enough,” I smiled. After all, I’d just subjected this child to a long list of questions to which she had to respond.

“What if,” she began, twinkle-eyed, “you had only one cookie, but you needed to share it with fifty kids?”

“Hmm …” I pondered. “That’s a tough one. One cookie only?”

“Yep!” She raised her eyebrows in satisfaction at what had to be my stupefied expression.

“Can I hand out something else instead?” I bargained.

“Nope. One cookie, fifty kids.” The eight-year-old was utterly too pleased with herself.

I smelled a rat but I wasn’t going to show it. She’d earned this after soldiering on through the difficult portions of the testing battery. “I give up.” I raised my hands in surrender. “I don’t see how I can split one cookie between fifty kids.”

“I never said how big the cookie had to be, did I?” she chortled. “If you have a gigantic humongous cookie it would be easy peasy to have everyone share it!”



For Cee’s Share Your World June-18-2018

The boy who was a girl


“I saw a boy who is a girl,” the six-year-old noted. We were wrapping up a session and he was coloring a Spider-Man drawing he’d made.

“Oh?” I offered. I don’t always know where things are heading when children offer out-of-the-blue declarations. Instead of assuming, I try to stay out of the child’s way till they say more or clarify.

“Yeah,” the little guy added. “He is a boy on the outside but he is really a girl on the inside.”

“I see.”

He lifted long-eyelashes with an adorable ‘is-she-really-listening-or-just-pretending-to’ look. When our eyes met, he nodded in satisfaction and lowered his gaze back to his drawing. He regarded it quietly for a few seconds then rummaged through the colored pencil box. “Aha!” he announced, pulled out the silver pencil, and meticulously drew squiggly lines over his superhero’s bodysuit.

“Yeah,” the boy said, “just like Spider-Man.”

I made a noncommittal noise in my throat and he looked up at me again, eyes slightly narrowed in concentration. “Yes,” the little boy stressed, “because you see, sometimes he is a regular man on the outside but he is still really Spider-Man on the inside.”





Make My Bitter Better

chocolate eggs

candy dish:


“I think I need three chocolates,” she noted after assessing the contents of the candy bowl.

“How come?” I smiled. She knew she was allowed one candy, and the ever so slight emphasis on the word need was expertly done.

“Well …” she paused, little brain wheels hastily cobbling up a good-enough rationale. Her eyes brightened, “… because I even had pepper for lunch when it was before … and … more chocolate is going to make my bitter better.”



For The Daily Post


What Do Babies Think? An excellent Ted Talk

baby loved

An acquaintance once stunned me and a colleague when she noted she believes that, “babies are basically a lump of meat just lying there until they are 10 months old.”

After I collected my jaw from the floor, I went on a long winded explanation (okay, tirade …) about all the things that we know and that prove infants are anything but lumps of meat until they reach 10 months old. In fact, they are active learners and interactively relating beings from the very moment they are born. Babies are so visibly actively engaged that I recall my absolute incredulity at the very notion that anyone can think them “lumps of meat just lying there.”

Well, they are not “just lying there,” not one iota so. Don’t know how the notion got into this acquaintance’s head, but she was wrong.

This fabulous Ted Talk is a great (and I admit far less tirade-like) way of explaining some of how they are very much the opposite. It is well-worth listening to. In it Alison Gopnik describes some things you may not think babies can do, as well as how they might be doing them.

Oh, and don’t miss the adorable ‘little scientist thinker’ video embedded in her talk. He defines “cute”!

What Do Babies Think?

kid science1


Hiding logic

hiding perfectly

A captured moment in the park:

Little boy, standing behind a knee-high bush in a hide-and-go-seek game: “I’m hiding. You can’t find me!”

Big sister: “That’s not hiding. It’s too short, you silly. You have to find something that covers all of you.”

Little boy: “Yeah, but then I won’t be able to see …”

Tree Life


“Are trees sad when people cut them?” The little boy came out of a week of school focus on earth, nature, resources, deforestation, and endangered animals.

“What do you think?” I returned the question. He has a reason for asking, after all.

“Yeah,” the seven-year-old sobered. “I think trees get sad because then they die and they can’t make leaves and flowers and acorns anymore.”

I nodded, sensing he has not quite finished and wanting to give him time to find the words.

A quiet moment passed, then his right eyebrow shot up the way it does when he gets an idea. Ideas for mischief, yes; but also for an answer that eluded him or a solution he did not see before. He touched the top of the table with his fingertips, and his eyes wandered over the floor, the bookcase, the closet door.

“You think maybe the trees are also not so sad,” he continued, “if people make stuff from them and then they get to be other things?”

“Um…hmm …” I noted in agreement, letting him work this through.

“Like if the tree gets to be a table or a chair or even a book then it is still important, right? But …” his young face wrinkled in too-old-for-his-age consternation, “but … maybe the trees are sad if they get burnt in the fire or something … because then they’re gone and can’t be anything anymore?”

“I see what you mean,” I offered, “but what if burning the wood helps keep people warm in the winter or cook their food?”

He brightened. “Yeah! I think maybe then the trees don’t get so sad … because they kind of make the food … ” His face got transformed once more, this time to seriously didactic, “But … but people still have to be very careful to not cut too many trees, right?”

“Right … ”

“… because the trees want to grow and be happy and also the squirrels and the birds need trees and monkeys and other things. Bugs, even. Some animals live on trees,” he instructed me, “That’s where they build their home. So people have to be careful because it is not fair to break all the animal homes and chop off all the trees to make things …” he paused. “And anyway, you can make tables from other things, too. Like plastic. Or maybe even a rock … I think …”

He quieted for a moment, his eyes wandered again around the room and rested on my bookshelves, on the National Geographic magazines on the side table, and the paper-packed folder with his work peeking out of the backpack on the wooden floor.

“I think trees really don’t mind if they get to be books, though” he added, satisfied. “Because then they can tell stories even if they can’t talk. I love trees and I love books.”

Couldn’t have said it better myself.


Bees’ Needs


Little guy, age four, talking about flowers.
He asks: “Why do bees like flowers?”
I say: “Why do you think?”
He answers, curling intonation into a question mark: “Because they give them honey?”
I turn my own reply into a query in return: “Well, the bees make the honey, but they need something from the flowers to make it. What do you think they need from the flowers?”
Him: “The recipe?”

bees for beginners