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Lessons from Ana

By Jean Hannon

Not everyone's mealtimes look like mine.

There will not necessarily be enough food tomorrow.

Food is not for play.

These are the lessons I learned from Ana*, and this is how she taught me:

Five-year-old Ana entered our classroom and went immediately to the large container of plastic snow play toys. She retrieved the dish-like items (recycled yogurt and applesauce containers) and meticulously placed them all in a neat row. Then Ana moved down the line of dishes carrying a much larger container and a makeshift ladle. She painstakingly scooped something invisible (to me) into each smaller container.

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