1. Sometimes you don’t just want “I’m sorry” to be enough to fix the problem.
Sometimes, when someone hurts you bad enough, you want them to sit out from recess. You want the teacher to tell your mom. And you want them to cry.
2. The risk of falling off the jungle gym is worth the view from the top.
Fewer things make my teacher heart skip a beat more than seeing a kid way too high on the jungle gym, hands spread wide, screaming “I’m king of the world!” not holding on to anything to keep them from falling. But what if they do fall? Chances are it’s nothing a band-aid and some peroxide can’t fix.
3. Being proud of yourself is cool, but having your parents be proud of you is awesome.
Granted, five year olds don’t totally understand the meaning of the word “proud” or why they should feel so good about learning their sight words. But they do know what it feels like to get a genuine hug and smile from their mom and a trip to the ice cream store because they “earned it.”
4. There’s no friend like a best friend.
They’re the one who will always push you on the swing. The one who will sit out on the side of the playground with you when you get in trouble. The one who will stick their tongue out at someone who just said something mean to you. It’s nice to have a lot of friends to play with, but none of them can replace your best friend.
5. Don’t worry about anything that’s happening after today.
Five year olds can’t truly picture what the “future” looks like. They nod their heads when we talk about college, they speak enthusiastically about what they want to be when they grow up, and they can tell you how excited they are for Chuckie Cheese coming up this weekend. But when it comes down to it, they break the rules to have fun with their friends in the moment even if they might get in trouble, they test authority and tell adults “NO” even if you threaten with calling their moms, and ultimately they do what they want. Because tomorrow’s another day and you might as well play in the glue today.