“Everyone will now take his or her seat!” commanded Stuart. The pupils filed obediently down the aisles and dropped into their seats and in a moment there was silence in the classroom. Stuart cleared his throat. Seizing a coat lapel in either hand, to make himself look like a professor, Stuart began:
“Anybody absent?”

The scholars shook their heads.

“Anybody late?”
They shook their heads.
“Very well,” said Stuart, “what’s the first subject you usually take up in the morning?”

“Arithmetic,” shouted the children.
“Bother arithmetic!” snapped Stuart. “Let’s skip it.”
There were wild shouts of enthusiasm at this suggestion. Everyone in the class seemed perfectly willing to skip arithmetic for one morning.
“What next do you study?” asked Stuart.
“Spelling,” cried the children.
“Well,” said Stuart, “a misspelled word is an abomination in the sight of everyone. I consider it a very fine thing to spell words correctly and I strongly urge every one of you to buy a Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary and consult it whenever you are in the slightest doubt. So much for spelling. What’s next?”
The scholars were just as pleased to be let out of spelling as they were about arithmetic, and they shouted for joy, and everybody looked at everybody else and laughed and waved handkerchiefs and rulers, and some of the boys threw spitballs at some of the girls. Stuart had to climb onto the pile of books again and dive for the bell to restore order.
“What’s next?” he repeated.
“Writing,” cried the scholars.
“Goodness,” said Stuart in disgust, “don’t you children know how to write yet?”
“Certainly we do!” yelled one and all.
“So much for that, then,” said Stuart.
“Social studies come next,” cried Elizabeth Gardner, eagerly.
“Social studies? Never heard of them,” said Stuart. “Instead of taking up any special subject this morning, why wouldn’t it be a good idea of we just talked about something?”
The scholars glanced around at each other in expectancy.
— Chapter XII, “The Schoolroom,” Stuart Little, by E.B. White




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Angela Buckland

Angela Buckland

Ren’s wife for 22 years. Mom of 4 amazing teens. Discipleship Director at Bethlehem Church. Writer. Runner. God chaser. I love Jesus. I love people. And I love helping people love Jesus more.

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