Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Mrs. P

Oh my god. I almost forgot to post today. I have a few minutes before spiriting The Kid off to karate class and was just sitting in front of the computer all, la-dee-da, cheking my email when it hit me. NaBloPoMo – no post yet.

I volunteer in The Kid’s classroom on Wednesday afternoons. An hour of math and then I get to accompany them to the library. Sometimes I help them find a book. Most of the time they find just what they’re looking for all own their own.

This gives me a wonderful opportunity to see The Kid in his natural habitat, interacting with other kids. Now, I don’t for one minute think that he doesn’t act differently because I’m there, but if you’re a parent of an only child, these opportunities don’t come along every day. I love watching him with his friends. Even when he is not paying attention and poking his neighbor, and then gets in trouble – I think its cute.

His teacher, Mrs. P is amazing. How she deals with the chaos of the classroom is just incredible. I am in there for an hour and a half and often leave with the urge to go home and drink gin straight out of the cat dish. I mean, first graders are crazy. They’re emotional and bossy and complicated. The first few times I worked I apologized because I didn’t finish the task she set for me and she just smiled and said, “It’s first grade. Nothing ever gets finished.” Mrs. P is cheerful and calming and friendly and very clearly a leader all at the same time. I think everyone who has a child in a public school classroom should spend an hour just watching what the woefully underappreciated and under paid (even in the good school district) teacher does all day every day.

She has my utmost gratitude for teaching my child with such kindness and enthusiasm and patience. Everytime I leave the classroom I think I should come straight home and send her flowers. I would do it today, if I only had time.

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