Heads Up

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Message from Tom Babits, head, Primary Division

Tom BabitsIn small groups, I invite the Form 5s to join me for tea at morning recess. We have 20 minutes at most. When they enter my office I greet them with the table set, china tea cups, napkins, tea service and a large platter of biscuits. I teach them how to make tea and some of the history and tradition of morning tea. It’s a lot of fun. However, it’s really just a ploy for me to get to know them better through conversation. In one such “Tea with Mr. Babits” this week, it went something like this:

We discussed the school, what they like and whether or not it’s hard work. They told me about life in their form, how it was different than last year, that they love the soccer teams and their form teacher. Two boys told me they were just a little nervous about an upcoming math test.

As the conversation ebbed, I pointed out some of the artwork in the room. I have a large map of Africa from 1907. I invited them to view it more closely, as the political boarders on it are so different. One boy said that looking at the map made him sad because so many people are getting sick from the Ebola outbreak. They said it’s sad because we know how to help them, but can’t. If they were in Canada we could help them. Quiet descended on the room as I think all of us got lost for a brief moment in contemplation.

The bell rang. They grabbed their binders, thanked me politely and then excitedly ran off to games period. In the quiet that followed, I was left standing there staring at an empty platter with biscuit remnants littered on the table, thinking about being 10.

Thanks for reading,
Tom