Monday, September 22, 2008

Bits and Pieces...

As we were walking out of lunch, I was my usual cranky self because we have about 30 seconds to line up, then walk up 4 flights of stairs to get to gym, and the babies all want to hug me cuz it's been 10 minutes since they've seen me (I love them!!) but they all have "lunch hands," so I'm pulling them off me like they have the plague, all while crabbing at them to "get in line, please!" As we were speed walking toward the stairs, D.U., who is this week's boys' line leader, looks at me with the big, goofy smile, and says, "I LOVE SCHOOL!" I haven't a clue what brought that on, but it instantly put my crankiness to an end. I smiled right back and told him, "So do I!"

As we were walking up the stairs, my buddy D.B. was having a little trouble staying in line while we were on the stairs. He was in line near E.B., who is the little boy who was at the therapeutic school last year. They seemed to form this instant bond, which I'm guessing is because E.B. feels comfortable around D.B. since he's probably a lot like the kids at his old school. So, D.B. was having trouble staying in line and would randomly move in and out of the line, in whatever spot he felt like. As we were going around a corner, I heard E.B. say to D.B., "Go ahead, Little Man!" and when I looked, he had stopped and was bending forward, sweeping his arm in front of him, letting D.B. step in line in front of him. My heart just melted!!

When we reached the 4th floor, I was leaving my babies in the hands of Mr. M., the gym teacher, and of course they all had to turn around and say good-bye to me. E.B. yelled, "Bye, Mrs. L.!" then blew me a kiss! So sweet!

I had to test a few more babies from the other kindergarten today. They are all her newest students, which is why they weren't in the computer last week when I did the other testing. Anyway, here are a couple of cute sentences from the test:
happy - Happy mean when you so excited! (that's not a typo, that's how it was said)
rained - When it rain, it get real dark!
happy - Happy is when you smile real big and you get so excited.

Back to lunch, the kids were served cold lunch today, which means peanut butter sandwiches. Not the kind you're thinking about, made with actual bread, but these pre-made little things made with graham crackers, with some artificial pb&j smeared in between them. Don't get me wrong, I love them! They're more like a snack or treat than a lunch. Some of my kids didn't know what to make of them. Eventually I got them all to at least take a bite, which then was followed by happy eating. They also had oranges, which I actually peeled for some of them today. I don't usually do that, because then I'd be there for 20 minutes peeling oranges. I show them all the first week of school how to use their spork to break the skin, and how to peel it themselves. But, today I was worried that some of them wouldn't eat anything for lunch, since all they got was the peanut butter bar and the orange. That's it. Oh, and milk. Not a great lunch, by any means. Although, I tried to sell my babies on the idea that it was a "fun lunch" today, all treats! Good thing they're only 5!

The reason for the cold lunch is that they are doing some work in the lunchroom. I'm as shocked as you are! There was some damage to the walls, and there was peeling paint and plaster. They broke through most of the walls on Friday afternoon, right down to the bricks, and when I came in today, I saw that they had put up some kind of paneling over the walls. It actually looks really nice. And, it will be sooo much cleaner and healthier for the kids. Unless, of course, they enjoy a little plaster dust in their ravioli!

One last little funny. One of my babies fell asleep at quiet time, and kept right on sleeping as we did our calendar and set up our math centers. I was going to wake her, but I figured that once the kids starting playing with the unifix cubes on her table, they would wake her up. Well, not so much! She slept and she slept. About 15 minutes into centers I looked over and commented to the other girls at the table, "Wow, E. is still sleeping?" and Little Miss V. said, "I wish I knew what she was dreaming about! Maybe it's The Little Mermaid." Naturally, it's so much cuter when you actually see the facial expressions that go with the words. They are just so precious!

OK, I need to get your opinion on something. I've always identified my babies by only their initials, obviously to retain their anonymity. I don't know about you, but I'm having a lot of trouble keeping track of them as I write out their little stories. Do you think it would be wrong to use their first names? Only first names, not last. And, I've never identified my school, so I think their identities would still be safe. What do you think? I think it'll help me when I write, and it'll help you keep track of the babies I write about. Please leave me a comment and let me know if you think that's crossing an ethical line. Thanks!!
Youth is a perpetual intoxication; it is a fever of the mind. ---François Duc de la Rochefoucauld


nellie said...

I am just a lurker who, BTW, loves your stories about the babies, so I am not sure if my opinion counts or not...but I really think you need to stick with the initials. I had no problem, based on the details you have given, figuring out what school you teach at. I think initials will preserve some modicum of privacy. Just my opinion...

Clippy Mat said...

your lovely stories almost (almost) make me miss my days of working with the little ones. they do bring back some good memories. you're doing a great job. i think the previous comment might be right on the subject of using kids' names tho'.

Suz said...

Very cute stories. Stinks about not getting a good lunch. I am pretty sure a lot of kids only get a good lunch during school.
I would not put their names. If the initials are confusing to you, how about a cute "happy boy", or "smarty girl"...something like that may make it easier for you.
Take care,Suz

Mimi said...

Love the part about "lunch hands"!

I have been an anonymous teacher blogger for a bit and don't think that using their names is a great idea. I know it can get confusing - I pick a trait or something about them and give them all nicknames on my site....

just a thought.

Christina Shaver said...

How far are these kids walking around from classroom to lunchroom? And they are in KINDERGARTEN? You really are a saint. When I was in kindergarten, the only time we every left that blasted room was for picture day. That's it. Otherwise, we all kept our butts in class.

I agree with the others about picking a nickname. I have a hard time remember everyone from their initials.

BTW, I called that therapeutic school. They told me no. Oh well. Another school off my list.

ChiTown Girl said...

Nellie- You've totally peaked my curiosity! You seriously think you know my school?! That's a bit scary!

Clippy- I'd love to know more about your days of working with the babies!

Suz- You are so on the money about lunch. Sadly, I KNOW that for many of our kids, the school lunch is the only hot meal they have all day, so it makes me so sad to think about what the weekends are like for these kids.

Mimi- I've been using the phrase "lunch hands" for as long as I can remember. I have to say it a thousand times a day! The kindergarten used to eat lunch in the classroom (up until 2 years ago!) so lunch hands were a HUGE deal, as they never left me. I can't even count how many times I've uttered the command, "Don't touch me with your lunch hands!"

Christina- that totally sucks about that school!! What the hell was their reasoning? Girl, if you knew how much we walked around in a day, you'd fall over! The lunchroom is on the opposite end of the school from our room. The gym is on the freakin' 4th floor, and we have gym twice a week. We also have art twice a week, and that's on the 3rd floor! I already had a baby fall head over heels (literally!!) down the stairs the second week of school. Thank God he 'crashed' into the legs of the boys in front of him, because they broke his fall! It was terrifying!

Thanks to all my blogger friends that took the time to comment here. Apparently, I had a momentary lapse in judgement!! ;-) I will stick to initials for now, but I think I'm going to give some serious thought to nicknames, as many of you have suggested. Thanks again!

Anonymous said...

One more voice for nicknames. I'm using characters from favorite children's books on my blog...It makes it more vivid so I can keep track of who's who.

Boy, you got a lot of love and sweetness today. That's wonderful!

miss r said...

Miss V = How cute?

Are you guys required to stay in their lunch this year? Goodness. Call me sometime, Momma L!

miss r said...

Oh yeah! We don't test our kids for DIBELS. Can you believe it? They pay people to take our kids out and test them FOR us. To be honest, as much as it took away from instructional time I kinda miss it.