Saturday, September 10, 2005

Living as a Substitute Teacher

Yesterday was a new experience for me. I had my first circle time. Those of us not born in the last 8? 10? years were not exposed to the circle time concept. Or maybe it was just those of us born in East Fort Worth. Circle time is used in school with younger kids, I think, as a way to measure how squirmey they are. Anyway, yesterday I was a substitute teacher (assistant teacher) to the pre-kindergarten class at Joey's preschool.

I had thought this would be a nice little side business. I'm pretty immune to other peoples' kids causing me stress, not completely, mind you, but pretty immune. And it is a job I can give thumbs up or thumbs down to depending on my schedule. And when I walk out of the door of the school to come home, I'm completely done. No carry-over stress. That was the big benefit. And, of course it's a bit of extra money. I figured for each morning I work, 9:00-1:00, I've paid for a month of tap lessons. Yippee.

It was fairly easy. I've discovered that pre-k kids really aren't ready for kindergarten yet. I've discovered that the ratio of teachers to kids at a private kindergarten (3 teachers to 20 kids) is much more in the adults' favor than at public school (1 teacher to 22 kids). But then again this was pre-k and in kindergarten at Good Shepherd, I think it is 2 teachers to a class.

Anyway, the most interesting thing I learned is that it must be a universal play factor that when kids are making up a game, and assigning themselves roles, (at school, it was Star Wars Kids) all the poor parents are dead! That's because children are always, ALWAYS orphans while they play. It happens here at my house when Emma and her friends make up a game. Almost anywhere I overhear what they are dreaming up, I'm dead.

It must be some universal strategy to insure the kids are in charge with no one but them controlling the story line. Anyway, I hope it's that and not mean revenge thinking against all us big people. But when one little pre-k girl basically told me to tell it to the hand yesterday, maybe there's more than one reason I wasn't alive at recess.

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