First grader Elijah intends to do anything he can to make his new classmate his friend.
|Since Stuart Michaels started school he rarely said a word.
“No” or “Yes” or “Not right now,” was all Elijah heard.
Even when they ate their lunch or went outside to play.
Stuart Michaels simply sat without a word to say.
“Miss Sanders why won’t Stuart talk and why is he so sad?”
“He’s new to school, Elijah, plus—he’s left the friends he had.”
Elijah said, “I’ll be his friend. I know just what to do.”
He put his snack on Stuart’s desk. “A gift from me to you.”
He watched and waited for a smile, a nod, a wave...a sign?
“No problem. I’ll go home and find him something else of mine.”
He rummaged through his toys that night. “Which race car won’t I miss?
He chose, returned then picked again, at last deciding, “This!”
As soon as Stuart came to class, Elijah met the boy.
“I brought this present just for you.” He handed him the toy.
When Stuart tried to give it back Elijah shook his head.
“It’s yours for keeps my newest friend. You take it home instead.”
He stuffed it in his pocket, and he kept his hand there too,
but never said a single word. Just focused on his shoe.
“Oh well.” Elijah walked away. “I need another plan…
I need a gift to really prove my friendship if I can.”
Once more that night he searched his room. “What’s special? Let me see....
”I know! He’ll love Houdini Bear! His magic worked for me.”
He pulled his teddy from the chest and slept with him that night.
By morning, though, he wasn’t sure if sharing him was right.
“I’ll let him take Houdini...until he talks, but then,
I’ll want to get Houdini back - in case I move again.”
But when Elijah got to school, the teddy in his pack,
he heard a voice say, “Thank you for the car and for the snack.”
And Stuart said, “Elijah, let’s be friends forevermore.
You’re as nice and you’re as thoughtful as the kids I knew before.”
Elijah said to Stuart, “Let me put my pack away,
then I’ll meet you at the easels and we’ll draw with Lu and Trey.”
Miss Sanders, who’d been watching all along, as teachers do,
said, “Stuart and Elijah, I’m so proud of both of you.”
Elijah giggled as he put his pack into his space.
He stopped to hug Houdini Bear, then left--a smile in place.