When you meet kids you don’t know, the best form of contact seems to be the high five.

Some kids, especially the small ones, try to hug everyone, and that’s nice. But some get very shy. You can see their minds working. “Who is this stranger? Why is he grabbing me? Why are my parents allowing this?” They don’t like it.

A similar train of logic applies to handshakes.

High fives seem to be the better course because the kid does all the fiving. You just stand there with your hand up. Kid gets excited? Great. Kid barely touches your hand? Still great. Kid hides behind a parent’s leg? Not a problem.

In general, I’ve found most do get a little excited because they’re the ones with power. They have agency, mild as it is, but mild agency is just right for smaller kids. They don’t go mad with power at high fiving an adult.

Well, some do, but those are mad with power to begin with. Also, how mad with power can a six-year-old get giving a high five?

Don’t answer that.

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