Friday, March 26, 2010

Spring Break

Today officially starts Spring Break. I'm looking forward to sunny weather and sleeping in.

Although I have many unfinished projects to attend to, realistically I see myself riding my black beauty during the day and quilting at night.

I'm sure after this week I'll be groaning and complaining about returning to work,

But once I step in to the classroom, I'll be happy to be back and excited to see the kids.

Each year I think they are the cutest class ever, but then the next year comes along and I again find myself saying, "They are the cutest class ever."
Their little smiles not only warm my heart but cast a spell on me as well. I guess that's what keeps me coming back year after year. But hey, you don't have to find your smile in a preschool room, if you check out Linda's blog on See Mom Smile she will definitely put a smile on your face and keep you coming back.

Thursday, March 18, 2010


In the 15 years of working with children, I have never gotten use to them leaving our program before the school year is over. We get mid year, then all of a sudden the families up and move for whatever reason and we never get to finish what we started. Actually don't quote me, they sometimes move back.

This year we seem to have an over abundance of children enrolled, more than any year in the past. It's as if they are coming out of the woodwork and saying, "Surprise, we're here!" We screen the little ones upon their third birthday and if they qualify, we absorb them into our already full classroom. It appears everyone child we screen this year has been qualifying, which is causing us to burst at the seams. I don't think the room can handle much more, let alone have enough hands to help out. So we strategized, revamped and decided to let the ones who have completed their goals and objectives, 'graduate' from our program before the year is over, thus making room for the newbies.

Our first 'graduate' came to us last year as a confused, lost little boy. Now that alone doesn't qualify him for special ed. But by doing a behavior check list with his mother, who at the time was recently released from prison, qualified him for behavior. He also was not potty trained and didn't demonstrate any self help skills, go figure considering the circumstances he was coming from. In the year and a half year he was with us, the little guy grew in so many ways. Potty training was a snap, as was teaching him to take care of his own needs by pulling up his pants etc... His language improved 100% and to tell the truth, we never saw any of the bad behavior his mother spoke of.

He was an absolute delight and one of the toughest for me to see leave.

Second to 'graduate' was a boy who qualified for speech. He too was enrolled for a year and a half and during that time his language showed remarkable improvement, to the point of no longer needing our services.

The other child that had left our program, just left. I was not done with this little fella, but his grandparents who have custody, were evicted from their home and had to move, thus taking him out of our district. This saddens me to no end! We had a major break through with our little friend, who does not talk but understands everything. At first he would expect and wait for someone to take care of his every need. Can't really blame him, who knows what he encountered during his first few years of life, which probably caused him to be the way he is. He cried with every transition, and would look at you with a blank stare. Slowly, he started to blossom. The crying stopped and he began following the routine, not to mention the last couple of weeks he started signing with some prompting. The blank stare disappeared and you could see the light in his eyes, he was getting the need to sign!

I truly am going to miss these little guys, but as always, we must continue to put our shoulder to the wheel and press on. In the last month or so, we started at least five new preschoolers with one in the wings, who will begin our program after Spring Break.

I better get my R&R while I can because, speaking from experience, there will be no rest for the weary.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Gravel in my shoes blues

Isn't it the pits! Although, it does do wonders for their self help skills.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Question of the day

The kids were lined up and ready to go outside, on the door is a stop sign. One of our preschoolers asked, "What does the stop sign say?"

Sunday, March 14, 2010

A Day at the Oscars

We come walking out of the building, the three of us like Charlie's Angels, Cameron Diaz, Lucy Liu and Drew Barrymmore. The hot sexy detectives with long flowing hair and and a body to die for. Outside awaits our adoring fans screaming and shouting our names. They run towards us embracing their little arms around our legs, all the while shouting, "Teeeeeacher, hi teacher!" It's at that moment, reality hits and I realize I'm not the incredibly beautiful skinny Private Investigator, but a middle aged preschool teacher who is by no means glamorous. But to the preschoolers it doesn't matter. They don't care what we are wearing, or if our hair is tousled and out of place, or even notice that our make up is worn away and dripping from our faces. No, they don't care about such things, instead they make us feel like we are walking the red carpet ready to accept the Oscar of a lifetime, all without the Paparazzi. Tell me, do you know of any other employment where you don't have to worry about what you're wearing, or whether you're having a bad hair day, or how many pounds you've put on, a place where you can go where you aren't judged but instead, received and embraced with honest love and enthusiasm?

Thursday, March 11, 2010

The Lion and the Lamb

"Whaaaaaaah, whaaaaaah, NO I don't want to do that!" "It's time to dance and everyone is dancing, it's not a crying thing." Whaaaaaah, scream, more yelling and crying. This carries on for most of the day, but the little guy is with us for behavior and his melt downs are not uncommon. We encourage him to use his words instead of roaring every time something doesn't go his way. "Roar, get away from my toys! Roar, you're touching me! Roar, I'm not budging! If he were a lion, he would bite, rip and tear anyone or thing that crossed him, which is why he is in our program. Hopefully, with a few more years of intervention, he will get his anger under control, have some friends and make it through life as a happy well adjusted young man. Meanwhile, back in class, we were walking the preschoolers from the playground to the bus, as it was time for them to go home. It gets congested coming through the doors trying to keep everyone in line, but it's a skill we're working on and for the most part they're getting the hang of it. In the front of the line was our lion, who was accidentally bumped by one of the teachers. "Whaaaaaaaah, whaaaaaah, scream," but before she had a chance to react, our little autistic boy, who is smaller than the lion and, doesn't have a mean bone in his body, grabbed the coat of the roaring beast with both hands and shook him ferociously. Back and forth the little lamb shook. It truly was the only way he could express his feelings. By the way he was shaking him you could see in his eyes he was saying, "Shut the @&*% up!!" I'm sure after listening to him scream all day, our little lamb was at the end of his rope. The situation resolved itself, the lion stopped wailing, the lamb let go, and they continued to walk towards the bus in complete silence.