Stuff Kindergartners Say

Yesterday morning I wore my hair down to school. I mostly did this because I ran out of time and didn’t have the chance to put it up in my typical top-knot, messy-bun style. I always wear my hair up to work because I’m convinced that every child in kindergarten is, if not infected, at least a vehicle for head-lice.

I’m feeling itchy just thinking about it.

Anyway. As soon as he entered the classroom one student threw down his backpack, ran over to me, and said, “Mrs. Muether! Mrs. Muether! Why is your hair doing that? It’s failing!”

I’m not sure if this insightful Kindergartner thought that I’d attempted to put my hair up and it was falling [and he’d just said that wrong word] or if he thought that my hair looked so terrible that it was literally failing. I will never know the answer to this. Today I’m back to the traditional up-do.

Last week I wore dangly earrings. One kid, in the middle of literacy centers, grabbed my earring [while it was still in my ear] and said, “Mrs. Muether! Why is there pink water in your ears?” I had no answer to that question.

During story time we help the children expand their vocabulary by choosing three words from the book to discuss the definitions of before we read. They then watch out for the word as we read as a class. When asked, “What does ‘tarry’ mean?” One kindergartner replied, “It’s what the mailman does when he brings the mail.” I assume this is how he feels while waiting for a Birthday Card or gift to arrive in the mail.

In addition to these strange outbursts Kindergartners sometimes just plain get words mixed up. One girl, while trying to tell us she went to a ‘fun party’ actually ended up informing the class, in a loud, carrying voice, that she had spent her Saturday at a ‘Fart Party’ – the other teacher and I took several minutes to regain composure and do some damage control.

Additionally in Kindergarten we have been learning a lot about giving compliments to our friends. If a child is doing a kind thing for another then they may get a leaf on the Tree of Kindness with their good deed written upon it for all to see. Yesterday multiple Kindergarteners told me how lovely they thought my tights were. My tights were plain, solid, opaque, black. One child told me, “Mrs. Muether, you’re a game.” Did he mean Dame? Did he mean that I am fun to play games with? I still haven’t figured it out.

If something falls on the floor a clump of Kindergartners will race toward it to pick it up first in order to get their very own leaf on the Tree of Kindness. Of course, if we do a kind deed and then rush to tell a teacher about the kind thing we just did we will not get a leaf on the tree. If we did that, as one friend told me, it would be the Tree of Boasting, and not the Tree of Kindness.

So far on this Thursday morning I have received only one compliment I’m beginning to wonder if I have something on my face.

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