Everything I Need to Know

You may be familiar with the popular series, “Everything I Need to Know I Learned…” Whether it’s “from my cat,” “from the 80s,” or the original, “in kindergarten,” these are seemingly simple lessons that end up carrying great importance. While these lists are often made up, and not based on actual lessons, I’m happy to say there’s one day from kindergarten that has stuck with me.

Our teacher had grouped us into pairs and given each pair one candy bar. Then, one of us was to break the bar in half. But after that, we had to let the OTHER student choose which half he wanted! It was my first introduction to a very basic etiquette. And while the lesson was obviously practical – this is expected behavior – it also presents a larger principle: The Golden Rule. Of course, we all appreciate it when someone offers us the larger piece; it’s how we want to be treated. And so it follows that treating others in the same manner is an act of decency.

While we may look back on our years of early learning as filled with crayons and instructions not to eat the glue, it’s important to remember that some of our most important lessons were learned here – lessons that make all the difference.

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