It's a good thing I work at a school, because I think I'm really just a kid a heart.
For the last couple of years, I've been buying gel stickers for every holiday and season, and putting them on the windows in the office. At first I said it was because I thought the kids would enjoy it, but now I know that I really do it because I enjoy it just as much.
Last week I put up all of the fall/harvest stickers I've collected; my favorite is this owl:
Kids will come into the office just to touch the stickers. Have you ever felt them? They have kind of a soft, sticky consistency ... I call them 'booger stickers' (Hey, what can I say? I work at a middle school!) One of our new students was in the office after school waiting for his mom to finish up with a meeting. He wasn't in trouble - he's a very sweet boy with Asperger's and his mom was in a meeting following up with some things she was concerned about, so he was just hanging out in the office. I watched him walk over and start touching the stickers and pretty soon he said "These feel funny." I said, "I know - aren't they cool?! I call them booger stickers because that's what they feel like - boogers!" He absolutely cracked up and touched more of the stickers, just to make sure they all felt like boogers.
Before long his mom came out of the meeting and, as she was signing out, he was playing with the stickers on the window. She told him not to touch them and I told her that it was okay for him to touch them and that we'd been talking about the stickers. I asked him to tell his mom what we call them; he blushed and giggled and said he didn't remember. I reminded him that we call them booger stickers and he put his head down, and became very shy. His mom let out a good belly laugh and he looked up at her with a huge grin on his face.
I know it sounds like such a simple thing, but it was really cool interaction with a young boy who has a lot to handle on his plate. Sometimes it really is the simple things in life that are the best.