A Kid’s Lens: Getting Excited About Getting Excited

I walked by the front door, past my five-year-old whose nose was pressed against the glass.  I stopped to get a glimpse of what the kid was looking at.  I pressed my own nose against the glass.  Not much seemed to be going on out there.  A care drove by.  A dog did his business on our lawn.  One of those intense winter joggers trotted past in a full body Gortex suite, facemask and all.  Other than that, nothing caught my eye.  Still, there we stood, two guys, noses pressed to the glass, staring at something incredibly exciting.  I just didn’t know what it was.

What I did know was that the snow had begun to fall.  Flashbacks of last winter’s onslaught came rushing into my mind. I had visions of cars and trucks strewn about the roads.  I had intense pangs of phantom soreness in my shoulders, my neck, and my lower back in remembrance of the inordinate amount of shoveling and ice scraping I was forced to engage in.  My toes went numb thinking about cold wet cloths and icicles hanging from my moustache and beard.

Brrrrr!  I was fully entrenching in this relatively off-putting recollection when I remembered that we were looking at something exciting.  I turned to the kid and whispered, “What are we looking at, Bud?”  As if I was crazy to not know, and with a shutter of energized enthusiasm he replied, “Daddy…it’s snowing!”

Wow, what a drip!  Even though the snow had become somewhat of a killjoy for the old man, how could I have forgotten the about the magic it represents to kids?  The stuff is like gold when you’re five.  Forts and snowball fights, snow men and snow angels, gearing up to the brink of immobility for sledding or simply rolling around in the yard.  It was snowing!  Who cares about my problems?  This was a wondrous day and I should have been jumping with joy!  I feigned excitement, and in doing so, it actually came to me.  I became genuinely excited.

All I had to do was say, “Yay…it’s snowing!” to realize that I meant it.  All I had to think about was the fact that this kid deserves to be a kid, and that he deserves to have a dad who couldn’t be more excited about every minute of his childhood.  All I need to do now is continue to remember that kids get really excited about lots of stuff, and that kid excitement is a great motivator for engagement, learning, and positive progress.

Lots of things are incredible to people who’ve only experienced them a few times, or who are experiencing them for the first time.  Kids deserve adults who know how to truly honor, encourage, support, and participate in the excitement of incredible things!  As a parent and an educator, it is absolutely a part of my responsibility to make sure that I celebrate any and all of the exciting stuff about life with my own children and with all of the students that I serve.  Heck, if I can get excited about snow again, maybe I can get excited about the rest of it to.  And you know what, when I listen and learn well enough to understating what the kids in my life get excited about, I find that I get to rejoin them in being excited, engaged, and on the path to learning and positive progress myself!

Live.  Learn. Lead.


Dream Big. Work Hard. Be Well.


  1. Gail Peters

    What a well written, creative (great imagery) blog entry… I will be keeping a copy of this blog entry for the day that my son and daughter debate with me (again) about why Michigan is not that great of a place to live! They remind me that the winters are too long and cold here, that the snow can make driving and walking any distance difficult, and that we are way too far from a beach or ocean! They forget how wonderful it was to be a kid and to experience the hours of fun they had playing in the snow (snowmen, snow forts, skiing, ice skating, and sledding). At their ages now it’s all about Spring Breaks in Florida, bikini’s, beach volleyball, tropical drinks with friends, palm trees, and wearing no coats, hats or gloves. (However, right now they are having a lot of fun in Chicago with their friends regardless of the cold weather.) Perhaps when they settle down and start their own families, they’ll think back about how much FUN our state with the four seasons, snow, and lakes can be. I’m hoping to one day be within 30 minutes of my kids and grandchildren just like my kid’s grandparents were all of their growing up years, but if I’m not that lucky, I will adapt/adjust and will be happy that they’re happy wherever they are. (I must say though, knowing what makes them happy… warm weather, beaches, and the ocean was part of our motivation to buy a condo in Florida last year! 🙂 Whatever it takes to spend more time with our great kids and family going forward into the future.) Thanks for reminding me how magical and wonderful SNOW can be through the eyes of a child!

    • bergseye

      Thanks for the read and the thoughtful comment Gail. The journey of a parent and an educator truly is wonderful and awe inspiring. I appreciate your insights!

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