I love First Sonâ€™s kindergarten teacher. I have no idea if sheâ€™s doing a good job or not with the kids, but on back to school night, she presented herself as a former dancer who fell in love with sciences. In addition to informing us what the kids were going to learn throughout the year, she taught us â€œin the jungle, the mighty jungle, the lion sleeps tonightâ€ with sign language, which the kids do at the end of each day. (How freaking adorable is that? However a classmate’s mom who is studying sign language wasn’t sure the signs were actually sign words.) They have class ladybugs and snails and monarch butterflies they set free (I think now thatâ€™s it getting colder, maybe they will no longer release â€œwild lifeâ€ back into nature. But what do I know. I always ask First Son how Fred is doing, a name I gave to one of the ladybugs, in an effort to get him to tell me something about the day. He has shut down any access to information, well before adolescence has kicked in. I want to know stuff. He tells me a kid bit him during lunch, but it may have been that the kid â€œpretend-bitâ€ him, mimed biting. I mean, how are we going to keep track of these obscure stories? But it is the teacherâ€™s job to decipher these elusive conflicts and situations, not mine.
This feels like an innocent time, where gym consists of waving a rainbow parachute to bounce a ball in the air. (Wow. I wish. My gym time? The treadmill! the Trudge Mill! The run-of-the-mill, occasional sit-up set). I also love this teacher because she is psyched for this job. Itâ€™s her first year in this position after a long career teaching this age group, so sheâ€™s not burned out. She said quite simply that she knew she was important because she is a kindergarten teacher, that she still remembers the name of her kindergarten teacher. If only I could also feel that self-possessed and confident! Let me practice here:
Yes, I know I am important, because I am a mother. And I still remember the name of my mother…
Ha ha ha