My favorite niece asked if she could guest post on “What The Fluffy,” and I told her “sure, but with this material you should start your own.” This is about “Jackisms,” and first days of school, and most of you parents out there will relate to this immediately. And Julie, I didn’t take any “literacy” license with this, because I thought it was good right out of the can…(Yes, that’s what you said.)
The lead up to the first day of school can take many forms. Most kids are excited to see their friends again after a long summer vacation. They are thrilled with the purchasing of new school supplies. They like to go and pick out that perfect first day of school outfit. It is a celebration of sorts; a rite of passage. Well, that wasn’t the case for my son. He let me know often that he just wasn’t going to school.
Jack was 5 years old and starting kindergarten wasn’t an option. He was going, little did he know, and would be just fine. He didn’t have the traditional pre-school experience, or any pre-school experience for that matter. He spent his days in what is called a Family Daycare. It was at a house in a nice neighborhood with other kids although many would leave to go to pre-school around the age of three. Why Jack didn’t and refused pre-school is a whole other blog-post. His daycare provider, Yaya, worked with Jack on the fundamentals (colors, writing, letters, behaving) so we figured he would be just fine. The school he was going to was the same school his older brother attended. We spend a lot of time at the school and Jack knows his way around, knows the teachers and a lot of the older kids.
Like any other parent, we started to “prepare” him for school by talking about it and playing it up as the best thing out there. We were met with resistance. And so it began….
July 18, 2012
Latest reason Jack doesn’t want to go to Kindergartner…they don’t take naps. Have you ever known a five year old who insists on taking naps?
July 20, 2012
Jack: What are you doing?
Me: Working on a flyer for your school.
Jack: Oh, you mean Jimmy’s school because I’m not going.
July 23, 2012
Me: Do you want to go and buy a new lunch bag for school?
Jack: No. Why can’t you remember that I’m NOT going to school?
August 13, 2012
Me: Jack, if you were going to school tomorrow do you think you will like it?
Jack: I’m not going.
Me: Well, if you were going to school tomorrow what would you like in your lunch.
Jack: I’m not going.
Me: Well, if you were going to school tomorrow are you going to wear your new shoes?
Jack: You just don’t get it. I AM NOT GOING. It just doesn’t make sense.
Me: What doesn’t?
Jack: Why do you keep asking me so many questions AND can’t remember I’m not going to school?
First Day of School — Morning
After an hour and a half, I finally peeled a crying, sobbing 5 year old off of my body for his first day of Kindergarten. He still wasn’t going to school and made this comment, “all of the kids are weird looking and so is the teacher. I just can’t stay here and look at them all day.”
First Day of School Afternoon
After hours (shall I say days or even weeks) of dramatic acting worthy of an Academy Award and comments worthy of a routine at the Comedy Store, Jack decided school was fun.
Me: What changed your mind about school today?
Jack: I stopped crying.
And, that was all it took.
Day 3 of School
If you didn’t know about day 1 you wouldn’t think what happened was possible. He LOVES school and LOVES all of his new friends. He’s told everyone who would listen about school, his friends and his beloved STAR dollars.
Jack: It just doesn’t make sense.
Me: What doesn’t?
Jack: Why I am able to behave for two whole days at school.
Me: Well, that is what I hope you would do.
Jack: It is the longest I’ve gone without being naughty.
Lets hope he keeps it up.
August 18, 2012 – Jack is in his element.
Me: How was school?
My son: Good. Lunch was the best.
Me: Why was that?
My son: My new friend asked why I like eating leaves (spinach). I told her I eat rocks, trees, dirt, and bugs too. Then she made a funny face and it was hilarious.
For all of you parents out there with kids just about starting school and not wanting to go, there is hope….Julie Malloy.