Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Pushing the Envelope -- Part 2

Did you read "Pushing the Envelope" -- Part 1?

Well, we had an experience last week that fully explains the WHY you have to push the envelope sometimes.

The 4th grade Chorus Concert is coming up (tonight, in fact). There are about 30 speaking parts along with all the singing. There are 150 students. Will has a "back-up" speaking part, which means that if someone is sick, then he goes on! I must admit, I was a little disappointed that he didn't have a speaking part. He is one of these guys that LOVES to be in the limelight. I actually have to sit on him a little bit to get him to not run up on the stage at Barnes and Nobles and perform for everyone. Sometimes, if there's a nice little kid who wants to be read to, I'll let Will read from the stage. But other than that, I put the kibosh on the acting in public. But at school, hey, they kid memorizes his line and everyone else's lines, and he knows how to emote, and enunuciate, and he's just flat out GOOD! He's a great little actor.

So, he doesn't get a line in the show (unless someone is sick -- and we can't wish for that, that would be totally uncool). He's a little bit miffed. So, to display his miffedness, he decides that on Thursday and Friday, he's boycotting singing in the chorus. His teacher doesn't know what to do, the Chorus teacher doesn't know what to do -- up until now, he's been all for singing in the chorus, and has enjoyed every minute of it! So I get phone calls from his regular ed teacher and his chorus teacher, telling me of the situation. The chorus teacher sounds worried -- she's never talked with me before, doesn't know how I'll respond (with laughter, of course!), and doesn't understand why Will is suddenly so uncooperative! The regular ed teacher, though, knows me, and knows how I'll respond, and basically just asks "So, can you kind of take care of this?"

So, when I finish laughing my head off, I pull Will into the room and say -- "so, ya know this chorus concert that's coming up? Kind of disappointing to not get a lead part in it, eh? Well, you know how many kids there are in the 4th grade? And there are only so many parts! So, sorry, but you can't always get a part. But that doesn't mean that you just up and quit! You have a responsibility! You don't renig on a responsibility! So, are ya gonna sing next Tuesday night?" to which he answered "Sure!" and the whole thing was over with.

Ya know how I was talking about in "Pushing the Envelope" -- Part 1 , how obstinate these guys can be? THIS IS A PRIME EXAMPLE! Do we let him continue to be obstinate? NO! Did I push him down a hill? NO! I just made sure that he's still going to enjoy the chorus concert, as he was planning on doing, without letting a little thing like not getting a speaking part get in the way of this wonderful memory of the 4th grade!

[and by the way, we are signing him up for an acting/singing class or camp immediately . . .]



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