Now, I am by no means the BEST teacher in the world, but, as far as substitutes go, I'd like to think I am pretty good. I've handled kindergarten through high school kids with similar ease. I get by. Even when I don't have the best plans in the world, i survive and so do the kids. By the end of some days I am very happy to see the door, but today, well, today, I suppose I was caught off guard.
I taught preschoolers today. Actually, I suppose they really taught me. It wasn't that they were bad kids, I don't think there are really very many bad kids out there. I think it was more that they were like getting too much U-235 or Pu 239 in the same vicinity...they were at critical mass and they were flying around like little neutrons, hitting little groups of preschoolers and fissioning and then creating more reactions until the energy had created a flux and my brain was buzzing. --OK, the metaphor of highly radioactive metals and kids breaks down a bit...but you get the gist. They were crazy. Like their parents gave them Red Bull for breakfast or something.
I had two batches. An early morning batch and an afternoon batch. The morning ones were younger. But the afternoon ones were no different. Only that there was a very bossy little girl who knew exactly what she wanted Mr. H to do. "You can sit here, Mr. H, and read me a story." "You can help me, WE are going shopping." "I am calling you on my phone, you should answer." It took a little while, but I think she finally understood that Mr. H does not respond to demands like one might expect. I ignored her and went about other tasks.
Mostly, I guess, I was mildly surprised that there was no formal plan for lessons. For the first hour or so, they were allowed to play together. Apparently building social bonds and learning cooperative play. Not that I am complaining. I am just more used to the structured and semi-educational nature of our kinder classrooms.
On the bright side, I work at WAP HI again tomorrow!
Then, this weekend, we have a wedding to attend. A cousin of Cora's, whom I have known since she was a little girl, is getting married. I won't forget the water balloon fight we had when I first met her and her older sister. They were SO LITTLE! Now they are all grown up. Don't tell her, but, she is a beautiful young lady now, and still, it's hard to believe she is getting married! Of course, the best part is she is getting married in a MUSEUM!! At least I won't be bored!!
Monday, I return to the Preschoolers...this time better prepared and wielding a few Tylenol for any headache that appears. All will be well!