C.B. had a big block of clay and a lesson about individuality to teach her kids, only they had problems connecting the two. What makes a good pre-school teacher is finding the words to explain that we are all given the same lump of clay and the way we form it is how we are different.

But I'm not a lump of clay, Teacher.

But I don't want to get my fingernails dirty, Teacher.

I am an alphabet board, and so are you. Here are your letter magnets, one two six eleventy-seven twenty-thirteen all the way from A to Z. Now do something with it.

Here's the 'me my myeself all mine' bucket. Here's the 'you yours yes no' bucket. Here's the 'love peace idealism' bucket. Here's the facts and number bucket. Stick yer hand in and pull out a handful, get busy arranging these letters. Don't look at my board. Stop peeking I said. Be yourself.