By Diane Ako
I have written here before about "A," the girl in Olivia's class that has shaped up to be her arch-enemy so far this year. I think she's a cute little girl, but the two fight. The teacher says it's because they're exactly the same - bossy.
I have lectured Olivia many times about getting along with her classmates and not bossing them around. It seems to finally have sunk in a little, because she recently said she would like to try to be friends with A. Yay!
One day when I picked Olivia up after school, as we walked past A, Olivia said in a flat voice, "I like your hair. It looks smooth."
The words were nice, the tone of voice was not the warmest. It's... a step in the right direction.
A did not hear over the din of screaming children what Olivia said, and assumed it was an insult. She turned and yelled back, "Don't you say that about me, Olivia! That's not nice!"
Olivia, frustrated by this reception to her attempt at being nice, hollered back, "I said your hair looks nice! It looks smooth!" ("A" really does have some smooth and pretty hair.)
We had not stopped walking so at this point I do not know what A's facial reaction looked like. Either she ignored my kid because she couldn't hear, or she didn't believe. Either way, I think we have some work to do to mend this first grade friendship.
But... small steps, right?