Don’t you just hate it when your 2-year-old brother tumbles off the furniture?
Lilliana Hernandez sure does. That’s why, for the new year, the 7-year-old has made a resolution:
“I will make sure he doesn’t fall off the sofa,” she says in a voice that would make all big sisters proud.
And, oh yeah. She also resolves to be better in gymnastics.
First-graders typically don’t make new year’s resolutions. Unless you ask them. Which is just what we did with the students in Laura Fogarty’s first-grade class at T.A. Edison Elementary School in Kansas City, Kan.
Why? Because every January it’s the same thing — the same adults making the same resolutions. Lose weight. Get out of debt. Stop smoking.
Time for some fresh promises. Like from Bailey MacDonald, 7. What’s your resolution, Bailey?
“To not fall off my bike without training wheels.”
Well, first, a big congratulations on taking the training wheels off. But sometimes you fall without them, huh?
“Right. And every time I wear leggings like this and I scrape my knee, I get a hole in it.”
In your knee?
“In my leggings!”
Phew! You scared me there. So does your mom have to throw your leggings away? Or does she sew them?
“She doesn’t know how to sew. But my grandma does.”
“But my grandma’s not here.”
Oh-kay. Where’s your grandma?
“Some state. I think it’s Africa.”
Africa, huh? That’s a couple of states away. It’s probably a better idea if you just don’t fall off your bike in the first place.
Kaylee Wong raises her hand. “I would gain more weight, because I am really skinny!”
(Under my breath) You’re killing me, Kaylee. You know that?
Nothing. I was just saying you look so pretty just the way you are.
“And maybe I would stop drawing. Because I draw a lot.”
Oh no. You don’t have to stop drawing. Drawing is a fine thing to do.
Who else has a resolution?
“To be a better artist,” says Fabiola Gamez Sabillon.
What a great goal. (The 6-year-old pulls out a pencil drawing of Kauffman Stadium.) You’re a great artist already, Fabiola.
Abdullahi Mohamed is next with this resolution:
“Helping my mom and dad cook.”
Like full Sunday dinners?
Baking cookies perhaps?
Wait. You’re not going to eat all of them, are you?
OK. Just checking.
And so it goes. Brayden Hernandez resolves to jump higher on a trampoline than ever before. Alishaye Dobbins wants to learn how to do flips and cartwheels. Aaron Villalpando says he will help his brother clean their room. Adan Caro Martinez wants to be better at tennis, and Jose De Anda will learn how to play baseball. Jose Nunez will help his mom bake chocolate chip cookies, while Michael Parker resolves to watch more of his big brother’s basketball games.
Yes, Bailey, you have another resolution?
“I want to be good at helping my brother.”
That’s so nice. All my sister ever did was bug me! How old is your brother?
And how would you help him?
“Well, he’s trying to aim his food at his mouth. But every time he picks up his spoon he, like, picks it up upside down, and it goes on his pants. Every single time!”
Yuck! So how could you help?
“I will teach him how to aim it (right-side up) in his mouth.”
Great. Now, Mrs. Fogarty? Do you have a resolution?
“It’s kind of silly, but I have a tendency to let my gas gauge get too low. Then I panic trying to get to the gas station.”
“My mom always goes to the station to fill up her gas.”
Whenever we run out, we have to buy more. Right?
“No. When she’s low she just goes to the station and gets some more gas.”
But she does pay for it. Right?
She doesn’t pay for it?
Well, that’s probably a resolution your mom might want to make, to start paying for her gas. Just throwing it out there. OK, bud?
Thank you all so much. And we hope you all have a wonderful new year!
To reach feature writer James A. Fussell, call (816) 234-4460, or email firstname.lastname@example.org.