Chuckles from our littlest eagles!Well, its begun! a new year of Pre-K chuckles.Feb 2020: " My family is going on a trip to January. There is a pool there."september 2019: as we walk the hall using our walking line struggling to move 18 children, one child says "this is hard. maybe we should split the herd"January 2019: i was presented with a drawing of me. the young artist stated "i drew you with squiggly hair, because you have it!"September 2018: A friendly little kiddo fondly patted my tummy and said, "teacher! you have a cute little round belly like Peppa Pig!" (so much for feeling good about my work out routines!September 2018: this year one little guy always calls me "Mrs. Teacher!" It makes me smile everytime.August 2016: just received this text from a parent "Someone asked K today if she was going to be in Pre-K and she said, 'yes, and my teacher is mrs. Campbell and she's a really nice girl.' " (may i never fail to be a "nice girl" in the minds of my 4 year olds!)December 2015: As i was greeting each child entering the classroom today, i noticed one little guy had something in his hair. I asked "Hey, what do you have up here on your head?" He replied "my hair!" (with a definite "duh!" implied)... Wait, there's more! As i prodded at the mess to try to figure out what it was, i said, "you have more than hair up here. there's something hard and crusty stuck in your hair". The nonchalant answer came quickly but not quickly enough, "Oh that? Its boogers!" Eww, eww, eww!November 2015: you know you are in the country when you ask your PK students if they know what holiday is coming this month and the most common answer is hunting season!November 2015: One of my PK kiddos gasped as soon as she saw me today! "Oh! Mrs. Campbell, your shoes are so beautiful!" (I was wearing old tan Converse sneakers!)October 2015: Today the new school psychologist was observing in my room when i heard these words coming out of my mouth..."OK, guys! Put your weed back in your baggies so we can move on to something else!" All i could think to do was quickly add, "things you never expected to hear in a PK classroom!" Explanation: a fall scavenger hunt which had included a leaf, some kind of nut, an interesting week etc...October 2015: today at snack time one of my PK Littles said, "I told my Mom and Dad thaqt we should use our manners at home too, just like we do at school" Hmmm... i'm certain that went over well! (and no! it wasnt your child!)October 2015: Today i turned around to see two of my lil PK kiddos looking at me with worried, quizzical looks on their faces. "What's the matter, guys?"... They just looked at each other and giggled. After more cozxing one got brave enough to ask, "Did you just put glue on your lips?" (Turns out my Chapstick was sitting next to the gluestick bin on the counter - appearances can be deceiving!)March 2015: We have been watching the Decorah Eagles nest cam and are waiting for the three eggs to hatch. today one little girl said, " One of the eggs hatched!". Another child asked, "how do you know?" "Because my dad showed me ... on the phone!" "What?!" questioned one student in complete disbelief... "Eagles don't have phones in their nests!" (I guess he thought that if she saw it on a phone it must have been sent from a phone!" )March 2015: Pre-K students are very good at giving compliments but often, in our classroom, it becomes almost a competition once it begins. The other day one of my students (in the middle of instruction of course) said, "hey! i really like your boots". This was no surprise as i really liked my boots too! ... however the subsequent stream of compliments (" i like your pants", "i like your shirt", "i like your earrings", i like your hair", ... ) were completely unmerited (trust me on that!) ...In an effort not to be left out the next child said, "oh yea? well, ... I like yer face!"March 2015: One little girl commented that my boots and hers were exactly alike. Since we've been talking about comparing and looking for details i said, "they are very similar! but are they exactly alike?" after considering this, the class began coming up with some slight differences such as her's having two buckles and mine only having one, The second observation of "hers have a zipper and yours don't have any zippers at all" was met with an incredulous "what?! You mean you can't EVER take yours off?!" from one concerned little guy.March, 2015: After a classmate had to repeatedly refocus her friend to keep her on task and in the right place we said "what would you do without your friend?" The faithful friend replied (very seriously), "i know! i always keep her "flumovated" dont' i? Hmmm. I'm not sure what word she was going for but i'm pretty sure flumovated isn't it!january 2015: heard from a student at the computer center "I'm sorry i couldnt hear you. i had my headlamps on!"December 2014: Our kiddos "killed it" at the christmas concert tonight! they were adorable and perfectly well behaved!! ...but my favorite moment was before the concert as we gathered to get ready. One of our many very handsome little guys walked in wearing a dress shirt and necktie. One of the little girls gasped and said, "Oh! Jackson! You look like someone to marry!"December 2014: somehow the conversation around our table turned to singing and dancing! One high spirited PreK student began grinning slyly. When asked why the student confessed, "My daddy .... He dances in his underwear! It's funny!" (now all you underwear-dancing-Daddies are worried its you, aren't you?!"December 2014: One of our classes is quite prone to breaking into song! their most recent favorite is "Ain't It Fun?" ... particularly the segment "Don't go crying to your mama when you're on your own!" ... which sounds pretty amusing when sung at top volume by 4 year olds!December 2014: One of the kindergarten teachers stopped by to tell us that during a writing assignment one of her students wrote about her last birthday party. She insisted on ending the story with "And the best part of the party was at the end because we all played Mrs. Campbell and Mrs. Belford!" (doesn't everyone know how to play that?! ... )Sept. 2014: Overheard in the housekeeping center: "Why are you hugging her [the doll]?" "Because she's my son and I love her no matter what!" ... Gotta love the sentiment but we may have some gender issues in that sentence!Sept. 2014: Noticing how neatly my kiddos had put away their books i complimented them and teased that maybe i should have them come and straighten up things at my house. One little guy stated that he didn't plan on coming to clean my house! ... A neat nick little girl told him, "yea but we should come clean up your house! Its a mess!" The poor little guy protested, "We'z house not a mess. I'z gotta help clean up everyday!"Sept. 2014: I missed a few days early in the year due to a death in the family. One student had brought a gourd for me to decorate our classroom, but refused to leave it at school with the substitute teacher. He told his grandma, "Well, there was a fake teacher there. I sure wasn't going to leave it with a fake teacher. i need to wait for the real one"Sept. 2014: We have been working on recognizing our names in print as well as knowing our full names (first, middle and last). We enjoy practicing by chanting “hickety, pickety bumble bee; who can say their name for me?” and I point to a student who responds with his/her name – first & last… or if they are going for excellence their first, middle and last! One precious boy had obviously been practicing hard to remember his middle name and responded quickly and proudly “Eli Peter Rabbit!” I swallowed my grin and affirmed his recall of his middle name & moved on to the next child!
September 2014: Today a very sweet gentle student said, “Can I tell you something?” “Sure. What would you like to tell me?” “Today, before I can to school, I threw a fit for my mother?” “Really?! Why did you throw a fit for your mother?” “I don’t know!” “I find it hard to believe you threw a fit for your mom. I can’t imagine that!” My disbelief stemmed from the fact that she has been so agreeable and sweet at school but I guess she thought I was questioning whether she was completely disclosing the truth as she responded, “Well…. Actually... it was more like 5 fits!”
September 2014: We have been working on matching objects which are exactly the same,objects which are “the same but …[dissimilar in some small way such as size or color]. With that knowledge firmly in place we moved to matching objects that are used together. During the concept introduction I showed the students a washcloth and a bar of soap. After they identified each one I asked “Can you think of a way these 2 match?” After a few supporting questions, I saw the eyes of one little gal light up with insight as she “We use them” “Yes,” I responded, “we use them together. When do we use them?”September 2014: Today at screening the PPVT assessment was becoming more challenging for one of our new Pre-Kers. She suddenly removed a pink princess cell phone from her pocket and said seriously, "Excuse me. I need to take this call." After a brief conversation she said, "I'm sorry. That was Rapunzel and it couldn't wait". hmmm, i guess we will have to hit the "no cell phones in school" rule pretty early!
after a brief pause she said, “cuz we stink!” Hmmm. Can’t argue with that!September 2014: One sweet little gal burst into tears when she saw Mr. Fuller waiting to help her with the next screening. She ran across the room and jumped into her fathers lap. I went to talk with her and asked what all the tears were about., Still sobbing, she moaned, "I dont think we want boys at school!" I told her that boys were everywhere and we pretty much just had to get used to them & then reminded her that her dad was a boy and she was pretty happy to have him at school! She went on to make a nice connection with Mr. Fuller during their screening activities and even admitted he was an "ok guy" by the end of the session!April 2014: Today i worked repeatedly with a student to help him with AB patterning. "Red, blue, red, blue what comes next?" ... "green" "There's no green in our pattern. remember when we make a pattern we repeat the same thing over and over again. our pattern is red, blue ... so red, blue, red, blue, red, blue .... (long pause) .. "what do you think?" He perks up and with a big grin shouts with enthusiasm, "I think its awesome!" How can you argue with that?!March 2014: we may have lost a volunteer forever. One of our little guys went up to a dear woman who volunteers the last half hour of each day helping with snowpants, boots and other winter woes. He earnestly said, "Mrs. Voss, These strings on my pants are really wet, see?" Making it obvious that she does not work full time with 4 year olds, she reached down and felt the ties on his pants and said, "wow, they are really wet! what happened?" With a perfectly innocent look on his face he confessed, "I peed on them!" (you never saw anyone move so fast to the soap dispenser!)February 2014: Overheard a conversation at the table today ... two little girls discussing career plans. One said "i'm going to be a teacher when i grow up." "yes," added the other, "And i will live in Paris and design dresses". Not to be outdone the boy next to them chimed in "oh yeah?! well, I'm going to be Sponge Bob!"February 2014: Today one of our students tried the" instant apology after a known transgression" in the hopes of avoiding the consequence. Having dealt with this a number of times already throughout the year i just looked at the culprit and before i could say anything his neighbor at the table shook his finger at him and said "well, that doesn't cut it!" hmmm! well said!February 2014: while filling me in on a recent OT session one of our providers was apparently standing close enough to the table that her notebook was brushing the back of one of our preschoolers. The normally reserved little fellow looks at me and says "Would someone maybe like to move that notebook?!" So unexpected; cracked me up!November, 2013: As I was wrapping up another conference (one where i had previously had a fair amount of interaction with the mom, but not a lot yet with the dad) the father said, "There is one more thing i think we should discuss before we leave!" (Oh- oh!). He went on, with a very serious expression, to say that the other day when he came home from work his child greeted him by turning around, wiggling his rear end and saying, "Come and get it!" Shocked the dad said, "Hey! where did you learn that?!" To which the child replied, "Mrs. Campbell taught me!" At my shocked expression the father lost his composure, burst out laughing and said, "My wife said you have a good sense of humor and would love that story!" Good Grief! We did do the chicken dance once, so there may have been a bit of tail shaking, but I swear to you there was never any "come & get it!" Kids!November 2013: Today at circle time, as i was reading our book for the day, i noticed that a little girl in the front row was repeatedly tapping her right ear. Being a pre-k teacher requires one to be a master of multi-tasking so i continued reading as i kept an eye on her, fearing that she might be getting an ear infection. She kept tapping at her ear gently but didn't look as if she were in pain. I was definitely puzzled until I heard her whisper, "Hello? hello? i can't hear you. You're breaking up!" Bluetooth manufacturers would be so proud!November, 2013: Having a highly social, verbally adept group of 4 year olds is a lot of fun, but also creates some challenges. They sometimes think they can talk you into or out of just about anything! Last week, on the spur of the moment, we had a vocabulary lesson on the word "nagging". (You can probably figure out why! when you're 4 its hard to wait for the final play center time!) I defined the word nagging, gave them some lively examples of nagging complete with whining & foot stomping (which they found quite funny coming from a grown up), and let them know that i hate nagging and sometimes when i hear nagging it makes me want to cover my ears & say "No! No! No way!" to whatever someone is begging for. I showed great restraint in not signally out the specific nagger of the hour! This week the biggest little nagging culprit had already received the same answer to his question 2 times in a row, but felt the need to ask a third time. i lowered my head to look intently at him, but before i could say anything he said, "I know! I know! Nagging!" At least we can celebrate that he DID learn the new vocabulary word!Oct, 2013: Many of the PreK students dont really recall last Halloween so, despite being prepped by parents and older siblings, they are often astonished and delighted when we begin trick or treating at the offices within our school building. This was certainly the case for one little guy this year who, upon receiving candy for the mere words "trick or treat" began quivering with delight, looks at me with wide-eyes and shouts, "I love Trick or treat! Halloween is the best day ever! It is my new best day!"Oct. 2013: Today a lively student returned after being absent for a few days. Routines are forgotten fairly quickly by 4 year olds and this particular child had been wandering around the carpet for a few minutes distractedly bouncing from one friend to another. I reminded him he needed to move his attendance clip, choose a carpet square to sit on & join "book time". several minutes later i again found him wandering. Kneeling in front of him, i placed my hands on his chubby little cheeks and said, "honey, do you have a place to sit?" The subtle reminder was lost on him, however. He paused briefly and said, "ummmmm... yes, we have a couch and other stuff"!Oct. 2013: Today a typically serious little guy excitedly said, "Its Tuesday! I get to see my dad today; my other dad." I responded, "You're excited to see your dad!" He replied, "Yep, its my day for visication!" hmmm, visitation/vacation? no wonder he is excited!
Oct. 2013: I began explaining that i wouldnt be in school the next day, but there would be a substitute teacher to work with Mrs. Belford. The first question, of course, was "why?". "Because i have to go see the doctor." " why?!" "because i'm having a small surgery on my leg" "why?" "because there's something in my leg that doesnt belong there and the doctor is going to take it out." "Will it hurt?" "The doctor will give me medicine so it doesnt hurt". ... long silence... after which one little girl looks at me like i'm the dumbest person in the world and says, "You DO know it's gonna hurt... at least a little bit... right?!"Oct. 2013: following a lighthearted conversation full of laughter one of our new PK friends said, "Teachew, You are always just cwazy!" i replied, "Oh! i'm sorry. i'll stop being crazy!". He patted my hand and said, "No, teachew. That's alright! I wike it!"Sept. 2013:This first week of school its not unusual that students cant recall our names and they often resort to "teacher, teacher". Today, however, i noticed one young man repeatedly calling me Ms.(something i couldn't quite figure out). Eventually we realized that he was calling me Ms. Girl... and he is not to be persuaded that my name is Mrs. Campbell! i guess there are a lot worse names to be called!June 2013: walking back from our trip to the town park, some tired little legs were having a hard time keeping up with the rest of the class. Periodically we would prompt them to catch up. At one point we heard them prompting themselves... "Hey, we better catch up!" said one of the kids. "Yeah," replied the other, "You be catch-up and I'll be mustard!"June 2013: "Teacher, Teacher, i can't use these scissors. they are just too dim!"May 2013: two little boys sharing the line leader job today. The first, a particularly animated, exuberant & demonstrative child, leaned in very close to the second, who happens to be a much more reserved and restrained little guy. he gazed into his eyes and gushed, "Oh, you are just my best friend in the whole entire world. And I love you". The second little guy, looking quite startled, looks up at me and says, "Well! THAT was bit creepy!"April 2013: During a discussion of dental health one of our students shared that her mom had had 4 teeth pulled the previous day. The little guy next to her stared at her in disbelief and said, "you mean she only has 1 tooth left now?!"January 2013: Today one of our youngest boys headed into the bathroom, but promptly cracked the door back open, stuck his head out and said, "Teacher, come here!" i headed over asking if he need help with his belt. Nope. His sparkling eyes opened wide and he said, "Guess What? yesterday... my dad taught me ... (dramatic pause)... to pee standing up! so, can I?!" well, that IS exciting i suppose, though I' sure Dad didn't expect it to be announced at PreK!January 2013: Today we celebrated the half-birthday of one of our very charismatic and demonstrative students. As we finished singing our birthday song, the students chorused "Happy Birthday" and clapped for our birthday boy, who elegantly took a deep bow and declared "I give all of you pleasure!" (I suspect he'd heard "the pleasure is all mine" but didn't quite get it filed right for reuse!)
December 2012: This week we had a field trip where we were greeted by Santa and a real reindeer! It was obviously a very thrilling experience for this group of 4 year olds. It also provided a few smiles! Our Santa was very soft spoken and engaging and took time to chat with each child before asking "have you thought about what you might like me to try to bring you?" One little girl replied shyly, "Umm, earrings, i guess". she started to walk away, but them turned back quickly, waggled her chubby little finger in Santa's face and forcefully stated, "But be sure they are REAL!"
December 2012: As we began calling children to come up to chat with Santa, i started with a capable and typically very outgoing girl, thinking she would be confident about it and would be a good example for those who were appearing a bit timid. I could immediately tell by her wide-eyed startled look that i'd made a mistake! (I found out later from mom that she'd always had a strong fear of Santas). I assured her we could let someone else go first and that she should watch and try to work up her courage so she could go up later.several times over the course of our time there i checked in to ask if she was feeling brave enough to have her turn. She always answered no, despite the fact that it was obvious she was watching intently and considering it. Finally, i let her know that it was almost time to go and asked if she'd worked up enough courage to come up. She nodded her head and said, "yes". impressed i put out my hand, figuring she might like a little support since she'd been so hesitant and tentative. With determination she firmly declined my help, "no, i can do it myself! I'm brave now!" She proceeded with purpose, not only to speak with Santa but to dance a little spinning dance making her dress twirl impressively, as well as asking him if he liked her stockings! What a turn around!December 2012: In the middle of a learning activity, one of our gals began yelling "there's a spider in my boot. there's a spider in my boot." Mrs. R responded, "well, take off your boot and shake it out." As our preschooler ripper off the shoe and shook it vigorously, the shoe-invader popped out of the shoe and onto the floor. ... a still-intact Cheerio, NOT a spider!December 2012: Yesterday one of our little cherubs was unusually full of fidgets and seemed truly unable to control her extreme wiggles. Thinking that perhaps she was taking medication that was affecting her, I wrote mom a note in the communication log to let her know. With obvious amusement Mom responded today that when she talked about it with her child, the child responded "its not my fault. it musta been that water they gave me at school!" ... well, I'm glad we got to the bottom of that! :+)November 2012: one of our service providers was having a bit of trouble motivating a student to go with her to finish a task that had been suspended to allow the child to go to snack with his class. Trying to help, i reminded him that his flag holder job was coming up and if his hallway work wasn't done he wouldn't be coming back in time to do his job. Now motivated, the student stood to join Ms. Courtney. She said, "are you ready now? let's roll!", as they walked out the door. As she turned from closing the door you can almost guess what she saw... our literal minded, and now very compliant, preK student rolling on the hallway carpet!
November 2012: Today we overheard a marriage proposal in the dress up corner, so we watched with interest from afar. our groom was dressed in a cowboy hat and cowboy boots while the bride was beautifully attired in a black glittery dress, black gloves and Cinderella slippers. The groom looked at the bride and said, "well, i guess we'd better dance then" and proceeded to lead (quite capably i might add) his new bride in a slow dance complete with a graceful under the arm spin. As another little beauty approached the lovely couple the groom looked at her and said, "I'm very sorry but i cant dance with you anymore. I'm married now!" Bless his loyal little heart!
November 2012: During a read aloud about the first Thanksgiving we noticed the large garden the pilgrims were tending. Given the rural setting of our school i assumed many of my students would be familiar with gardening so i invited them to share one or two things they grew in their family garden. The first several PreK-ers shared crops that fit my expectations... corn, pumpkins, potatoes, carrots. The next enthusiastic little guy, however, caught me off guard when he announced that in his garden they grew weeds. I smiled and replied, "I think there might be a lot of gardens that grow weeds. Do you grow anything else in your garden?" "Nope," he replied proudly, "just weeds". I had just managed to successfully swallow my smile when the next child shared, "We have a really really big garden, but all we grow in it is grass!" (hey, i have one of those in front of my house too!)November, 2012. My students are expected to check the job chart each day when they enter the room. this is a big deal and they take great pride in "reading" the job chart and telling anyone who will listen what their job for the day is. Students also need to pay attention so they can respond when i ask for their job. This afternoon when i called my weather helper to come up front, it was quickly apparent that he was not paying attention. i repeated the invitation three times, "where is my weather helper?" "We need our weather person so we can do our weather job." Suddenly, it dawned on my day dreaming buddy that i was waiting for him. He shook his head, looked a bit dazed as he stood up, and said "Oh, I forgot who I was for a minute there!" (i have to admit, sometimes at the end of a tough day i feel that way too!)November, 2012: One of my enthusiastic students rarely stops talking. He loves to keep a running commentary going about any number of things and, unfortunately, i must admit that occasionally i tune out for brief periods! This was the case one day when we were late for buses, he couldn't stop talking long enough to get his backpack on and, of course, both shoes needed tying! i knelt to tie his shoes as he talked rapid fire about his dad going on a work trip. He suddenly stopped mid-sentence and blurted out "hey! ya got nice hair," and then immediately continued on with his story! i chuckled and said "thanks" to which he replied (again mid-story) "yea, its curly like mine" and went on to finish his story!May 2012: While giving clues about the /u/ items i had hidden behind my back I said, "I am holding a map of something that starts with the U sound. It is the country that we live in." This proved to be harder than I'd anticipated as we guessed every town within driving distance. After a reminder that they needed to think about the U sound and with a few more clues & explanation about countries and towns, one child excitedly began sputtering "Oh, Oh! I know this! I know this! It Yew Nork!" (impromptu geography lesson definitely followed!)May 2012: While entering the school on one of the first warm sunny spring days an exuberant little guy proudly announced, "My mommy says she's gonna let me BIZZ my hair now that its warm! (Buzz cut perhaps?!)May 2012: Mrs. Belford had been battling a cold and came in sounding very hoarse. As she worked with one young man at the table, the student on the other side of her gently tapped her arm and said quietly, "Mrs. Belford, Mrs. Belford, just go "ahem", like that!"May 2012: During art class one conscientious student was carefully following the instructions to heavily color each part of his Underwater scene (so it would show up when they watercolored blue over the top). Suddenly he approached Ms. Brown and said in a concerned voice, "Ms. Brown, I just cant' do it anymore!" "Can't do it?" she queried. "yea, i can't do it anymore! i am getting very frustrated and I'm about to scribble!" (PS: after a short break he was good to go on!)March 2012: overheard during an informal small group conversation - "i see the pimple in your eye." " yuck, she has a pimple in her eye?" " yes, she has a pimple in her eye. I have a pimple in my eye. you have a pimple in your eye. Everybody does... See that little black spot in the middle? that's your pimple!"February 2012: This story was relayed by our art teacher. The students had been working on drawing giraffes. As a companion story, Ms Brown chose "Giraffes Can't Dance" (by Giles Andreae) in which Gerald Giraffe finds it difficult to dance at the annual jungle dance. Finally, a friendly cricket tells him, "sometimes when you're different, you just need a different song". At this point an excited 4 year old says, "yes, like this one" and launches into a loud, enthusiastic rendition of "I'm sexy and I know it!", which was kindly but quickly cut short by Ms. Brown!January 2012: As we had our calendar time we were reviewing" yesterday, today, tomorrow; last week, next week" by discussing January birthdays in our class... i told my students that tomorrow was the most important day in the whole year (my birthday!). they responded with disbelief (i guess teachers aren't supposed to have birthdays!). I told them I knew it was hard to believe since i never look any older, but i really did have birthdays just like them! i guess the idea of me not looking any older was worrisome to one little gal who said, "don't worry, teacher! Some day you MIGHT grow up!" I told them not to hold their breath... i was pretty sure it was too late for me to grow up! Another student added, "you might even have kids someday" (Hmmm, my 3 sons will be glad to hear that!)October 2011: Apparently my kiddos told the substitute teacher that she could be their "pretend teacher" because Mrs. Campbell was the real teacher.September 2011: After almost tripping on a preschooler who was lounging on the circle time carpet, i said, "honey, please sit up. I'm walking around tying shoes and I'm worried about stepping on you!" His oh-so-helpful classmate responds, "yea, and you don't want that to happen! teachers weigh a LOT!" thanks a lot kiddo!August 2011: I just ran into the mom of one of last years PK students. He was, despite many conversations of explanation, confused about having a new teacher in kindergarten. once again mom explained that he'd have a different teacher because "Mrs. Campbell has to stay in PK". With great indignation, my little friend put his hands on his hips and sternly informed his mother that ... "Mrs. Campbell knows her letters. i know she does. so she can go to kindergarten!"August 2011: One of last years continuous thinkers was feeling a bit anxious about kindergarten. she asked her grandma "do we have carpet time in kindergarten?" "yes, i think you do". "Hmmm... do you think you could ask Mrs Campbell to remind Mrs tanner that we are only very little children and might need reminders to sit and listen quietly?" with a smile grandma asked this chatty little girl if she had anyone special in mind who might need a reminder. she looked a bit chagrined and, not willing to admit past guilt, answered "oh, Mrs. Campbell will know!" (ps. i did remind Mrs. tanner just to share the smile!)April 2011: i think i just got the ultimate compliment from one of my students! she quietly asked, "Mrs. Campbell, can i ask you a question?" "Sure, honey, what did you want to ask?" "Mrs. Campbell, Are you a grown-up?"April 2011: while discussing why the bees and butterflies in all our photos were all near flowers. i was pushing the students to expand on their "cuz they like them" answer. one student suddenly shouted, "Wait, wait, i know this! flowers have these things called connectors and bees like to suck on connectors!" Hmm. connector?.... nectar? pretty close!April 2011: one child was sharing with her grandma how much she enjoyed PreK and her teachers. grandma agreed that PreK was pretty special. after a pause our student said, "soon I'll be old enough for kindergarten" "yes, you will be" "but I'll still have Mrs. Campbell for my teacher", "No honey you won't, but there are other teachers who teach kindergarten and they are really great too!" long pause ... "I know! how about when i move up to kindergarten so does Mrs. Campbell? and then move up and move up and move up?" grandma replied, "I'm not sure they'd let her do that, plus I'm not sure how high her degree goes", another long pause ... "well, why can't we just raise her up a few degrees?" If only certifications were that easy!!!March 2011: Sometimes a teacher doesn't have to say a thing! This week I had the kids cutting a large shape out of cardstock. I had already given them a pep talk about having the strength and experience to do it even though i knew it might be tougher than regular copy paper. I advised them to take their time and be patient. As I turned my back to grab the basket of markers I heard one little guy already complaining, "i can't do it. It's too hard." I turned around and opened my mouth to remind him to persist with patience but his classmate, a "to the point" little girl, beat me to it. She looked up from her task and said, "oh come on! Be a man!" He might be a bit small to be a man, but I didn't have to say anything else!March 2011: one of our parents shared this story after returning from February break. after a week of staying up late and sleeping in, it was pretty difficult for our little preschooler to open her eyes and get out of bed for that first day back. after repeated attempts to rouse her had failed, our five year old sleeping beauty slowly opened one eye, scowled at her mom and said, "I can't wait till I'm old enough to retire!" I'm sure she doesn't realize how far away that truly is!February 2011: following a discussion about bats and other nocturnal animals one child announced. "hey, I'm pretty sure my dad is nocturnal. He sleeps alot in the day!" well... she filed the vocabulary anyway!January 5, 2011: in Pre-K there are often activity options offered for the students to choose from and occasionally i inform them that a certain behavior is "not an option!" Apparently I use the word "options" way more than i realized!! First, a friend, whose granddaughter is in my class, shared this story. She set out an outfit for her granddaughter to put on. Her granddaughter promptly said, "Grandma, is this all there is? don't i get any options?!" A few days later another preschooler excitedly identified our Letter Person of the Week "That's Mr. O!" He then proceeded to exclaim, "Mr. O - yes, he's got options!" (in reality Mr. O loves OPPOSITES!).October 12, 2010: Our shareperson today brought a small Batman figure to show his classmates. In an attempt to get him to expand on his initial "I like him", I asked him, "What does Batman do? Does he have a job?" His reply: "rescues people". "Oh," I replied, "Sounds dangerous! What does he have to rescue them from? what kind of trouble are they in?" He looked at me with a concerned look on his face, leaned in close to my ear and whispered (to save me from embarrassment i suppose), "He's NOT really real, teacher!" I guess i can quit worrying about Batman's safety then!September 18, 2010 A Healthy Self-Concept!! After decking herself out in every glittery item in the dress up bin, one of our little angels declared, "look at me! I'm just stunning!!"September 11. 2010: Two preschoolers worked hard to build a vehicle with the magnetic blocks, but the opposite magnetic poles were causing difficulty. When one of them discovered the secret and shared it with his classmate she was amazed - "thanks for helping me figure this! You are brilliant!"September 8, 2010 - Transitions can be hard for preschoolers this early in September, so we talk allot about what is coming next and what is expected from the students. Two minute "anticipation reminders" are routine but coming to the work table can still be difficult. This had certainly been true for one little guy. I approached him, said "hey, buddy, its your turn to come" and held my breath for his response. Sensing hesitation I thought I was in for a fight but decided to try to minimize confrontation and demonstrate the expectation that he would comply. I bravely said "I'll met you at the table" and turned to walk away. Behind me I heard a rustling sound and a determined "hey! hey! look at me!" I turned reluctantly, anticipating a defiant little face but was greeted instead by a wide grin! "What did you want me to see, honey?" He raises his tiny hand and points to his own face - "look at me! I am coming AND I am happy!" And as his teacher, I am celebrating!!