Posted by: thiscait | December 16, 2005

The Psycho Ward (aka the pre-k/k classroom)

There are those who say that teaching is an easy job. I mean, you get summers off, the workday ends at 3–it’s positively slacker-ish. To those people I say HA! Come spend a day in my classroom…

As proof, I share the last 20 minutes of my day yesterday.

2:55 (end of our very short planning time) the phone rings. It’s the Movement teacher calling to report that L is naked in the Commons bathroom. Apparently she had an accident again and, well, that requires taking all of one’s clothes off, didn’t you know? My assistant (who is SO much more than an assistant) runs downstairs with L’s bin of extra clothes.

As she disappears down the stairs, half of the class returns from Drama. By the time they’re settled in around the circle, the other half returns from Movement. Without my assistant I am unable to lull them into calm with the guitar, so I pull out Liony (our stuffed lion who goes home with a different child each day) and his journal so that we can read about what he and A did last night.

As my assistant and L return from their adventures in the bathroom, I send C to time out for…I’ve lost track of what. As he walks away, he mutters under his breath “you’re so dumb.” I shove Liony’s journal at my assistant and go over to have a chat with the little darling.

I return to the circle as the class is wrapping up the goodbye song, just in time to call children for aftercare. C is still mad and refuses to leave the classroom. Somehow I get him out the door without too much of a battle, in time to witness S and B arguing over who is first in line. Since they’re both line leaders this week, I tell them they can stand side by side, but as B is hopping around, being loud, and bumping into people I warn him he will lose this job if he can’t show me he’s ready for it. I turn around to further coax C and others into jackets and backpacks, and turn around to see B whacking AD over the head with his jacket. I remove him from his spot and tell him he will be caboose. Hysterics ensue. Parents in the hall are staring.

Meanwhile in the classroom, E is telling my assistant that he and AD are getting married this June. Their moms are getting married, so they are getting married too. A is running laps around the edge of the carpet while explaining that they’re picking up her Irish relatives at the airport and telling about all they’re going to do with them.

Aftercare is picked up and taken upstairs. B is still howling, but is, thankfully, staying in his spot at the back of the line. Since I’ve clearly explained to Ms. G why he is there and why he is upset, I guess he has no choice.

I run our younger siblings group down to the commons, since the teacher who normally does that is currently on bedrest. As I get there, I realize I left the tray that M brought muffins on for snack in the classroom. M and I run back up to the third floor to get it and then run back down to find her siblings and her mom. As we open the door to the commons, M looks up at me with her adorable blond curls and freckled nose, and says to me utterly sweetly and innocently, “I know why you have boobies.”

Ah, yes. It’s a really good thing it’s Friday. Oh, and I should add that I NEVER get out of school as early as 3:30. Unless it’s to see my shrink.



  1. I am so, so glad I am not a teacher. I am completly not cut out for that.

  2. it sounds hard, but so dreamy, too, ya know?


    Sorry it was so hard for you.

    (and I know why you have boobies, too)

  3. Oh, I definitely love it. And I spent a long time laughing about it all after the kids left on Friday (since what I wrote was only a slice of a very nutty day). Even on the hard days I end up more entertained than annoyed (or maybe equally so).

    For the record, her explanation about my boobies was pretty accurate, though I couldn’t hear most of it since we were entering the throng of just-dismissed children and their parents.

  4. I hear you sister, and I feel your pain.

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