Wednesday, April 10, 2013

In Which I Get Overly Proud of the Kindergartner

She's in the shower and she asks innocently, "Is she really naughty?" She's referring to a classmate who I guess might struggle with some sensory or learning issues. Tonight, Jemma's been telling me about all the times this little one has needed extra help "making good choices."

"No," I tell her. "She's just learning how to be in a classroom. Some kids just take longer than others to learn those kinds of things."

Jemma is incredulous: "But mom, we've been in school for 130 days!"

"Well, I'm sure you're a good friend to her and to everyone, right?" I say.

"Yeah," she says, her voice mixing with the shower steam, "Sometimes I hold her hand and ask if she wants to sit by me on the rug. And Monday she was wearing leopard pants, so I promised her I'd wear my leopard leggings on Tuesday." I think back to yesterday: leopard leggings, purple shirt.

"I bet she loved that," I say.

"Uh-huh," she says, and she finishes up making a potion for her sister to find when it's her turn in the shower next.


Her homework one day was "List five words that describe you." Jemma's list:


I suppose she thought she should keep it real - you know, talk about how awesome she is, while also admitting that she's occasionally furious and mad.


Her New Year's resolution was, in part, to try more new foods (YESSSSS!), and now at least once a week at the dinner table, she'll pause before a bite of broccoli or cannellini beans or pork chop and ask, "Will you tell Mrs. M?" And I say yes, and I end up texting her lovely teacher the details of just what Jemma tried that night. I'm going to get as much mileage as I can out of that resolution.


Before Spring Break, Jemma came down the stairs one morning, casually sporting a green skirt around her shoulders, with her neck and head sticking through the opening where her waist would normally be. (Additionally, she was wearing a green-and-white striped shirt with navy-and-white striped leggings.) She seemed quite proud of her look, so off to school she went. Fifteen minutes later, a text from her teacher: "Love her style. A skirt as a wrap!" She did it the next day, too (different skirt, of course) and we began referring to her as Project Runway. I think she was trying to start a trend, but sadly, the other kindergarten girls didn't seem to catch on, and her coat interfered with the flounciness of the skirt-as-shawl look, too. I have my fingers crossed for a resurgence later this spring, though.


She wrote a poem yesterday after reading a book of poems and patterning it after one she'd liked:


Do you Like Blue? Do You Like red? Do you Like SLeping in your Bed?

do You Like YeLLow? do You Like WHite? do you Like SLePing At nigHt?

She brought it to school this morning, then brought it back home this afternoon with a glowing note on it from her teacher. I was praising her efforts and creativity when she got it out of her folder this afternoon, but she looked less than thrilled.

"What?" I asked.
She pointed to the first line. "I like this line the best."
"Yeah? Why?" I asked.
"The other one . . . there aren't enough words in it," she said.

I was secretly thrilled. I mean, I don't want to brag, but she's basically scanning poems correctly at age six. I see a bright future! Like . . . being an English major! Everyone knows that's where the big money and abundant jobs are, right?


Her teacher and I have decided to keep her in kindergarten forever.

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