I hate sand. I hate when it gets on the floor and I step on it with my bare feet. I hate how heavy it feels. I hate when it gets under my finger nails. I hate when it gets in hair or eyes.
I was told these children love sand. So sand is very present in our room today. And ya know, I haven’t hated it.
M climbed into the sensory table and declared she was at the beach. We turned on some wave sounds to make it more official. We buried our feet and hands under the deep, grainy sand. We pretended to take a nap in the warm sun. We cared for each other, brushing sand out of each others hair and clothes. We shared stories of being at the beach.
We got to know each other.
I found myself continuously drawn to the sand table for the first time in my teaching career. I had trouble walking away, not wanting to miss a moment. I laughed, smiled, conversed, and immersed myself into “the beach” with my new children. And I discovered there are things I like about sand. I like the way it feels to slowly trickle sand on the tops of my hands. I like scooping up as much sand as I can and slowly releasing it so it looks like a sand timer. I like the idea of an atmospheric beach setting being created with the sounds of crashing waves.
And isn’t that what meeting new people is all about? Seeing something from a different perspective and learning something new about yourself and the world we share. Learning to appreciate what other people love, and sharing what you love with other people.