Jason liked school.
At least, he liked the idea of school. That there were other kids to play with had its ups and downs. He didn't fit in with all of them, but that was OK. He had a few friends and that was more than enough. They were all older than he was but that wasn't something they had figured out. He was big for his age and more than smart enough to do the classwork. That helped him blend, which was a blessing. He would've been an obvious misfit in elementary school and probably wouldn't have found much more acceptance in a university no matter how advanced his brain was. Socialization was what he lacked. That took time with others and they definitely had the advantage there. Success required experience and adaptability more than thought. The others had been schoolmates for years, going through interactions they had come to know as normal. In more ways than one, he was the new kid.
He enjoyed learning, though. As much time as he could manage was typically devoted to reading, writing, drawing or tinkering. There always seemed to be some insistence on making sure he slept and ate, dealt with chores or simply went outside to play, but that just pushed him to make the most of the time he had left. Still, that left him few new encounters in academic classwork. Anything the teacher provided to read, for example, he had long ago memorized. When he asked for additional books, he was actually discouraged from trying to get ahead. So much for the idea of a learning environment. It had been a nice theory, though.
The teacher said it would be an interesting exercise. He was a little skeptical, but Miss Oliver had a personality like a sunny day and a pretty smile so he liked her more than enough to keep an open mind. Besides, it was the best way to learn.
"Though a few of you may have experience with another language," Miss Oliver said as he tried not to get distracted with a mental count of languages he had learned, "or remember learning to read and write English, most of you don't. So to refresh your minds on...