At work we have a ball closet where we keep the playground equipment. There was a second-grader who we’ll call “DJ.” He’s a unique kid with a great imagination.
“Woah,” said DJ when he saw the closet. “What’s this!?” he said, as if he were gazing into some cool, mystical place. He hopped inside, and looked around in awe.
“It’s a magic closet,” I said.
“REALLY!?” he asked.
“No,” said my coworker. “Now get out of the closet.”
One day Mary Ann, DJ, and another second grader had accompanied me to the ball closet as I returned the equipment. They were again fascinated by this simple closet. They hopped in, exploring it as if it were some sort of hidden cave holding long lost treasures.
“I want to see how dark it is inside the closet with the door closed!” said Mary Ann.
“Yeah!” added DJ.
“Can you shut the door on us?” they asked.
“Yeah! Shut the door! Shut the door!”
I shut the door on them.
“Okay. Bye guys. See you tomorrow,” I said, pretending as if I were leaving them in there.
“Woah, it’s dark in here,” they said. “Okay. You can open the door now.”
I remained silent, hoping to trick them into thinking that I left them stuck in there. I waited a little while.
“Mr. Robert, you can open the door now,” they said from inside the closet.
I waited silently.
“Mr. Robert, we know you’re there.”
I couldn’t fool them. They know I would never leave them. Nevertheless, I think they were glad when I opened the door for them. As I held the door for the kids Mary Ann hopped out, and hugged me from behind the way she so often does.
What looks like a simple, ordinary closet to adults, looks like a fascinating place to kids.
What adults see:
What kids see: