id·i·om –noun. an expression whose meaning is not predictable from the usual meanings of its constituent elements, as kick the bucket or hang one’s head, or from the general grammatical rules of a language.

One of the many joys of working with young children is their discovery of language. The ins and outs of the English language can be tricky, and as children uncover the nuances, often humor is involved. Today at bus time, Martin was chatting with me about his brother.

“Is he older or younger?” I inquired.

“He’s older… oh, that brother, he really drives me up the nuts,” he said.

I think he was going for either ‘he drives me up the wall’ or ‘he drives me nuts’ – but what he said was, ‘he drives me up the nuts’.

“Excuse me?” I asked for clarification.

“He teases me and tickles me, my brother just simply drives me up the nuts,” he explained.

With that, Martin’s bus was called, I received a great big bear hug, and he was on his way. Teaching kindergarten is no piece of cake… it’s often all Greek to me and I find myself having to bite my tongue or feeling like the new kid on the block, but working with these kids, with all the hugs and laughter, the learning that takes place is just icing on the cake.