I’m Just Startin’, Kindy-garten

John’s first few weeks of kindergarten have been quite an adventure.

Our mornings start like normal, with both kids up and eating breakfast and getting ready for their day. Typically, I walk both John and Edie over to the school (two blocks from home) and drop him off around 7:20. I then return home with Edie and Lauren typically drives her to daycare at Four Seasons. John is in class from 7:35 to 2:55, and goes straight to an after-school program put on at the school by the YMCA where they play games and eat snacks and get some exercise. I typically walk or bike over and pick him up at 5:00.

We’re seeing lots of good things. For the most part, he says he likes it a lot. His actual schoolwork that comes home is impressive. Lots of good work being done with letters and numbers, and his coloring has improved immensely. He seems to be quick to make friends. He says he has six friends, including one best friend named Milo. He isn’t sad or afraid when we drop him off; in fact, he wants me to drop him off farther away so he can walk in by himself. All good things.

Of course, there are some things that need work. His eating has been a nightmare! We were so relieved when we thought we were done with packing lunches, but he has wildly abused his newfound privilege of eating school lunch. Apparently they aren’t doing a lot of policing of what the kids take, and what they actually eat. John has been spending extra to buy ice cream and Capri Sun juice boxes nearly every day. He has actually been truthful about it when asked, though he is blatantly ignoring our commands to eat healthily and take a fruit and vegetable. He’s also not eating any of the main courses because they look gross or something. So basically he’s survived so far on ice cream and apparently peaches. So this week I have been forced to pack his lunch again so the temptation isn’t there.

He’s also finding out that he can pretend to be sick or get injured, go to the nurse’s office, and have me come pick him up. On consecutive days he apparently hit his head on the wall in gym class that required a trip to the nurse’s office. On Friday, the first time it happened, I questioned whether or not he was really hurt, but went and picked him up. He had to hang out alone in his room for a while while I worked, but eventually he was allowed to come downstairs and watch TV. So naturally he tried pulling that again Monday, and I called him on it and told the nurse to keep him in school! I of course remember being a kindergartener and pulling the same crap. If someone hurt my feelings, or I realized I had forgotten shoes or an assignment or something at home, I’d pretend to be sick and call for someone to pick me up. It wasn’t that long ago, buddy boy! But after school he stuck to his story that the exact same thing happened in gym, and seemed hurt that I would dare question him!

But all in all I think we are happy with his start to kindergarten. I am fairly certain I was bawling every day at this point, and I was among the oldest in the class whereas John is the youngest. Of course it helps that I could run to the school in a minute flat in an emergency, whereas the farm was 18 miles.

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