We have some very dear friends in
Germany and we've spent quite a bit of time with them here in
San Diego and in Europe. I followed the children to school . .
. I couldn't help myself. Once a teacher, always a teacher! I
walked with the girls to the bus stop, rode the bus to school
and sat in on their classes on two separate days, jumped rope
to American jingles and completed the same assignments they
were given (or tried to). Even though I could only understand
some of the language, I came to the realization that no matter
where we are, children are children, delightfully so! Since
then we've been back several times and I've been invited to
teach in their English classes and design some materials for
their program. Such fun! Thought I'd share this poem that I
wrote after visiting the classrooms in 2004. While spending a
week in Tuscany and another on the Danish coastline, I taught
the girls American jump rope jingles. I was surprised to find
later that they had shared them with their German school
chums. I was talked into going outside for recess and being
one of the rope turners!
Children Are Children
Children are children
wherever you go.
They act the same from head to
The boisterous boys with skinned-up
Who love to laugh, to tickle and tease;
They twirl their fingers in their hair
And weave their daydreams in the air.
They play a game of tag and chase,
Or have a rowdy running race.
The patched-up jeans and baseball caps
Belong to boys and chummy chaps!
The giggly girls with bows in their
Who skip and jump from here to there;
Dainty dresses and frilly frocks,
Shiny shoes and slippery socks;
Barrettes and braids and freckled faces,
The missing teeth with smiley spaces;
Bracelets, braces, shiny glasses . . .
We love them all, the girls and lasses!
Children are children wherever you go.
They act the same from head to toe!
(Written For Frau von Heyden
and Frau Domnick)