Broadening My Experience

Oh my glob, you guys! (Said in my best Lumpy Space Princess voice, a reference I know is probably lost on most of you but is a pretty perfect representation of how my inner voice sounds). I’ve been substitute teaching in the same second grade classroom all week. I’m so tired.
Truths:
*2nd graders never want to sit and veg out like high schoolers. They don’t want to work any harder than high schoolers but the alternative is musical chairs or heads up seven up instead of just falling asleep at their desk. Constant vigilance is required.
*2nd graders do not mind sucking snot back into their heads all day long instead of blowing their noses.
*2nd graders fart.
*2nd graders walk up to you in the middle of the lesson just to give you a hug. Like totally out of nowhere. They just need it. And when it happens you realize you might have needed it as well.
*2nd grade teachers seem to only get one thirty minute prep period a week. SOOO lame. I retroactively want to take back all the times I complained that I taught five different subjects a day but only had one prep. One hour long prep. Every day.
*Doing dishes by hand while conserving water seems a heck of a lot more daunting when you work and don’t just have to fit the dishes in between Gilmore Girls reruns and the next episode of House Hunters.

Interestingly, I have now taught this group of children as long as their real teacher did. The kids act like I’m really the teacher. They just go with the flow.

There are two nice things about this sub gig. One, I am in Rolo’s school and spy on her everyday. She is young enough to like this. I could even see her from my room today, forlornly slumped over on the swings during recess. Even though I couldn’t see her face I knew she was unhappy and alone and my heart just shattered for her. Maybe that isn’t a bonus after all. When I asked her about it at the end of the day I found I was right. She had been crying because her ONE friend had just gone off without her. This is the part of parenting that requires enough maturity not to yank up an innocent Kindergartner and yell at them until they regret hurting your baby.
(Rosalind is fine, has friends, and was totally happy-go-lucky by the end of the day. No worries).
The other bonus of being in the same school everyday is that I know the procedures. I hate not knowing exactly how something works. Three days in and I already know how to do bus duty.

I will leave you with this brief and befuddling conversation I had with an eight year old girl my first day.
Her: I’m going to fish camp at 5:00 am on Sunday!
Me: Awesome! Are you guys going fishing?
Her: No. We’re going beaver hunting.
Me: Oh, interesting. What do you do with beavers when you kill them? Eat them?
Her: No. We just take them apart and sell the skins.
Me: Yeah, I guess I’ve heard of that.
Her: I LOVE beaver hunting.
Me: Great.
Her: I especially love when there are babies.
Me: You mean when you kill the mom there are sometimes babies?
Her: YES! And I play with them.
Me: Neat. Can’t beavers sometimes be mean?
Her: Not these. The babies are always dead.
Me: …….
Me: You mean you play with dead beaver babies?
Her: YES!!!
Me: Uhhh… huhhh….

3 thoughts on “Broadening My Experience

  1. Dawn you had me cracking up , my husband would of thought I was crazy the way I was laughing ( if he were home), and then came the part of my darlin forlorn, took me straight to the bottom. Just the thought of her all alone and sad made me want to jump on a plane and rescue her from the terrible other kindergardeners. I guess my baby is not in Kansas anymore, where all things are perfect, and she did not have to deal with reality, School is tough, I know she will figure it out, shes the smartest kid that was ever born.

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