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Lesson Plans

Good Story

[ Thread ][ Subject ][ Author ][ Date ]
Lawrence A. Parker/OCCTI (occti)
Wed, 10 Nov 1999 10:57:34 -0500

The Grandfather

A frail old man went to live with his son, daughter-in-law, and
four-year-old grandson. The old man's hands trembled, his eyesight was
blurred, and his step faltered.

The family ate together at the table. But, the elderly grandfather's shaky
hands and failing sight made eating difficult. Peas rolled off his spoon
onto the floor. When he grasped the glass, milk spilled on the tablecloth.

The son and daughter-in-law became irritated with the mess. "We must do
something about Grandfather," said the son. "I've had enough of the spilled
milk, noisy eating, and food on the floor." So, the husband and wife set a
small table in the corner. There Grandfather ate alone, while the rest of
the family enjoyed dinner. Since, Grandfather had broken a dish or two, his
food was served in a wooden bowl.

When the family glanced in Grandfather's direction, sometimes he had a tear
in his eye, as he sat alone. Still, the only words the couple had for him
were sharp admonitions, when he dropped a fork or spilled food. The
four-year-old watched it all in silence.

One evening, before supper, the father noticed his son playing with wood
scraps on the floor. He asked the child sweetly, "What are you making?"

Just as sweetly, the boy responded, "Oh, I am making a little bowl for Papa
and Mama to eat their food in when I grow up." The four-year-old smiled and
went back to work.

The words so struck the parents that they were speechless. Then tears
started to stream down their cheeks. Though, no word was spoken, both knew
what must be done.

That evening, the husband took Grandfather's hand and gently led him back to
the family table.

For the remainder of his days, he ate every meal with the family. And, for
some reason, neither husband nor wife seemed to care any longer when a fork
was dropped, milk spilled, or the tablecloth soiled.

Children are remarkably perceptive. Their eyes ever observe, their ears
ever listen, and their minds ever process the messages they absorb. If
they see us patiently provide a happy home atmosphere for family
members, they will imitate that attitude for the rest of their lives. The
wise parent realizes that every day the building blocks are being laid for
the child's future.

Let's be wise builders.

--Jim Thompson

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