Time to get real people. Kindergarten is hard. If I didn’t think I would get laughed off the island, I would like propose that kindergarten teachers should get an extra stipend for hazard pay. I know, I know, we choose to teach kindergarten. And while I do love it more than anything (really, I do, I do, I do!), seriously, it is the hardest job in the world. Hard. Difficult. Sometimes… impossible.
The first few days can be trying, but we’re on day… fourteen now. Is it getting better? You betcha. Is it easy? Not a chance. This year, for some reason, there was a huge influx of boys. Boys. Boys. Boys. Boys. Boys. That’s what I feel like I’m dealing with all day long. I love them, heck I AM one, but when they are five, they can be… well a handful. As the days have gone by, one by one, I feel like they are falling into line. I’m getting them under control… slowly… one by one… kind of.
There are a few stragglers though. They just seem to want push, push, PUSH me every chance they can get. My Rest Stop has never gotten so much play. It is being kept permanently warm by mostly just a few sprouts. I’m not sure how effective it is, but I refuse, refuse, REFUSE to humiliate a child by yelling, shouting, shaming, pointing, or putting a dunce cap on him. You think I’m kidding, but there are teachers I know that would resort to such shenanigans. I won’t. Won’t. WILL NOT do it.
So. This happened. I am not embellishing or kidding. This really happened.
During a writing activity (it was short, mostly they were just coloring while I scribed a sentence), a few boys were getting up, Up, UP, every five seconds to get a drink, goto the bathroom, or do just about anything, but work. My expectations for seat work are small after fourteen days… maybe five minutes. Too much. I was getting frustrated. I rang the bell. Silence. Hands on heads.
“Boys and girls, we have only two more minutes to finish our pictures,” I began.
“For the next two minutes, while we finish working, NOBODY will get our of their seats…”
Seats, the S sound was still lingering in the air, when Bobby stood up, walked over and took a drink of water.
Really? Are you kidding me? I seriously went and checked his folder to see if he had a hearing problem I wasn’t aware of. He doesn’t.
I breathe. Not normal breathing… deep yoga breaths. Close my eyes and take oxygen in through my NOSE and out through my MOUTH breaths. I smile. I focus on the little gems who listen and give me hugs. I just keep swimming, just keep swimming, just keep swimming… Tomorrow will be better. I know it. Right?