rocks in the pocket

Last year, I was constantly digging rocks out of the smallest child’s pockets, the washing machine and the dryer. Then, summer arrived and although said child spent large parts of each day outside, there were no rocks in my laundry. School began two weeks ago and the rocks have returned. I am perplexed by the connection between school and rocks in the pocket. I have tried to formulate a hypothesis.

Psychology Hypothesis: The playground is the pinnacle of fun and keeping a bit of playground in your pocket allows the illusion that the playground is wherever the child is and not a fixed geographic location on the school property that is only allowed for twenty minutes a school day.

Monetary hypothesis: The school is a prison environment and valuable commodities like a lunch dessert, pencil with some remaining eraser and choice of best friend for the moment are bought and sold using cigarettes rocks as currency.

Gravitational hypothesis: Very small children enter school and are reminded of basic science information like, gravity. Aware of their size and weight, children fill their pockets with pieces of the Earth in an effort to avoid floating up to the ceiling that is heavily spiked with dangerous pencils.

Worksheet hypothesis: Faced with the prospect of another day trapped in a chair, filling in the circles on TCAP practice tests, children keep rocks in their pockets to roll between fingers, stare at and imagine as spaceships whenever the teacher is too busy grading the mountains of multiple choice worksheets to notice what the students are doing.

I don’t think I’ve formulated a hypothesis worthy of further exploration. Yet.

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