Wednesday, October 3, 2012

I have seen the enemy and its name is Kindergarten

In a rare burst of domesticity/mothered-out-bliss, I volunteered to help out in Noelle's Kindergarten class with 'centers' once a month. Note: I did NOT volunteer to be room parent because HELL NO. My first day was yesterday as last week I received the calendar with the volunteer schedule. (Um, did anyone maybe THINK to check if said schedule for OTHER PEOPLE was actually workable?) (No.) (Obviously.) Because I am a TEAM PLAYER (and apparently have much more in common with sheep than I am comfortable examining right now), I sucked it up, kissed lunch good-bye and headed out. In a freakin' monsoon. I swear that the roads I took were *thisclose* to being completely washed out and I was headed for a starring role on the evening news: 'Over-involved mother of 2 discovered in tree after minivan was swept away in the Raging Corn River of October 2012'. (It was so that bad y'all.) In a rare moment of foresight, I actually built in extra time so I wouldn't be late to help a teacher who had no idea I was coming. Communication FTMFW!

Noelle's teacher was glad to see me though and my role was to assist the kids in their centers. Also to referee and cheerlead as 15 five-and six-year olds after recess are...challenging. And you know what? I really enjoyed it. It was such an incredible experience being able to be in the classroom with my daughter, see her participate engage in learning activities. And Noelle? She was so excited that HER MOMMY came to her class to help that she glowed. She wanted so badly to run to me and bear-hug me but she held it in until Mrs. Richmond gave her the go-ahead to break formation. And I was okay with that. My role was to assist, not disrupt the classroom routine that she had spent the past month drilling into those little heads. I was able to sneak in lots of hugs and kisses during my hour there; worked with two centers on making their books about their families and family trees. Basically, I was there to do whatever Mrs. Richmond needed to allow her to work with smaller groups of the kids. And these kids were great. Great listeners, very little redirection needed, they got along and I had a blast working with them, getting to know them and building Noelle's confidence that her mommy and daddy cared about her school. I know that I'm lucky that my job has enough flexibility to allow me to take an hour here and there to be involved in her education. Not everyone is as fortunate as I and I do not disparage anyone for not being able to do the same.

And this was a good transition for me after being so involved in her preschool day; in seeing her teachers every day and discussing the good and bad. So as much as it was for her, I guess it was for me too. So much so that I went and volunteered to pick up another day a month.

Someone send me some rose-colored glasses please? I have a feeling I'm going to need them.

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