Monthly Archives: October 2010

My Head Is Full of Children

When I lived in Provincetown for a summer, there was a T-shirt in one of the toursity-gifty shops with art by one of those crafty greeting-card women that said that: My Head Is Full of Children.  And it had a picture of a head.  And there were children all over the woman’s head.  And she looked happy for it.

Well.  My head is full of children.

I wake up and dress and feed and prepare lunches for them.  Then I drop them off at various places.  Then I go to my workplace —  which is full of children.  And then I go straight from my workplace to the other building of my workplace to get my eldest child.  Then we walk home.  Perhaps run and errand together, then pick up the youngest child.  Feed, bathe, jammy, read, bed them.  My head is full of children.

There is happy and ummm…not the opposite of happy, but not happy, to this situation.

Here’s some of the happy:

  • My son’s warm hand in my cold one, walking to school on a chilly October day.
  • Looking at, and discussing various Halloween decorations on our walk.
  • Listening to my eldest opine about choice time in his kindergarten.  Listening to him retell the read alouds.  Trying very hard not to jump in and reveal that I know how the story ends.
  • Seeing my little one dressed in a vest and a hoodie with the hood up and his little curls flipping over the edge of the hood.
  • Every little success I have in making and getting the children to eat healthy(ish) fast(ish) food made by moi.
  • The children I spend my day with?  The students?  They are an amazing, hilarious, interesting group of people.  I love them.
  • Seeing how responsible my Cakie is about doing his little kindergarten homework.

Here’s some of the not-exactly-opposite-of-happy:

  • My baby is two.  Full-on one-hundred percent two.  Melt-down city.
  • I don’t even have any kind of cushion of time for myself.  I have a sitter twice a week after school.  For one of the days I plan with the third grade.  For the other day I plan with my co-teacher.  Done.  Then I pick up Cakie.
  • If I stop home before I pick up the two-year-old, the five-year-old is really difficult to wrench back out of the house to fetch two-year-old.  I wish I could flash back to the seventies and just leave him there for the ten minutes it takes me to cross the street and fetch the melt-down king.  But I cannot.
  • I never get to cook.  Not for real.  My co-teacher was sick yesterday when we usually plan, so I got to make potato leek soup.  It was awesome.
  • My honey doesn’t get home until at least 7:30 most nights.  That just sucks.
  • What I really really want is to go out with some adults and drink some freaking alcohol.  But if I do, I’ll get horribly sick because of my stupid stomach/intestinal problems which have yet to be resolved.  Don’t I deserve some good motherf*cking white wine about now?  Don’t I?  Huh???
  • I have no time to putter in my classroom.  I miss puttering in my classroom.

I’m in limbo a bit.

That’s all I have to say right now.

Thanks for listening.

3 Comments

Filed under nothing at all, Parenting the school boy, teaching, working motherhood

“Gifted”

I’m putting it in quotes.

That’s what I feel about it.  The way NYC does gifted, is that children are tested when they are 4 (!) and put into gifted classes where they stay until high school.  That is so dumb.  As though kids don’t change.

I don’t believe one can tell if a child is gifted until he or she is about eight years old.

All of this is to say that Cakie’s teacher pulled me aside to ask me why I didn’t put him in gifted.  Ummm.   Yeah.  Because I think it is silly?  I think it is a way to pull rich folk into to public schools.  Because I hate how the “gifted” fifth graders are so sick of each other they want to puke because they’ve been in the same class all the way through school.   Because I want my son to work hard, not just think he’s smart.  Because I want him to not feel like he has to be perfect at everything, or else he gives up.  (Ok, he’s already like that.  But no need to fan the fire.)  Because my school is full of gifted kids who are not in the gifted program.

But then…. there is one part of me that is curious as to how well he’d do on that test.  There is one part of me that would like to see him at the school run by my friend, that only has gifted classes in it, so it wouldn’t be that same isolation/ I’m-in-the-smart-kids’-class attitude.  There’s a part of me that wonders what it would be like if he went to the gifted school in Manhattan that goes all the way up to high school, so I wouldn’t have to stress out about getting him in to a good middle school or high school.

What’s your take on it?

 

PS I was both flattered and appalled by this little chat.  I’m hoping he isn’t acting up, or being snarky.

6 Comments

Filed under Parenting the school boy, teaching