Schoolwork is much more interesting when the writing implements have altercations with one another.
It is also an excellent opportunity for me to practice patience.
Thomas is challenged to be patient while he does schoolwork, too. Anthony has a habit of creeping up ever so softly behind him, reaching under his elbow, and stealing a crayon or eraser or pencil. He then runs off in high glee, because he knows, as sure as morn follows night, that Thomas will give a great wail, and a heated chase will ensue, around and around the dining and living rooms.
I try to tell Thomas (although he is usually too upset to hear) something that someone once told me, only about him, to wit:
Some time ago in confession my jaw almost hit the kneeler when instead of hearing, as I half-feared, “Wretch! How could you lose your temper with your small child?” what the priest actually said was, “You know he’s just trying to get your goat, don’t you?”
I think this qualifies as a Social Studies lesson for all three of us.