First day of school

second grade! a loose tooth!
Originally uploaded by Liz Henry.

Second grade! I forced Moomin into jeans rather than the same ratty sweatpants he’s been wearing since he was three. You don’t want to *advertise* the fact that your clothes are still size 3T, now do you? Someday he’ll thank me for the deliberately cool back-to-school outfit.

The PTA fed us muffins & coffee.

I loved the scene in the classroom, which is mixed K-2. (Moomin’s one of the big kids now!) One of the parents of a kindergartener was videotaping it all. Other people had their cell phones out, clicking away. The teacher, a very patient person, let us all cram our giant selves into the pint-sized classroom. Kids were in a circle on the floor. She clearly didn’t expect us to be hovering! “Okay, well, welcome to your first day of school this year. I know we’re going to have a great time. Parents, thanks for coming, and you can pick them up outside the classroom…” Sheepishly… we filed out.

After the coffee and muffin gossip session, I went back to peek in the window. For no reason! Just couldn’t help it! If only I could live a day in the life… even by spy-cam… It seems like yesterday that I was in Mrs. Lloyd’s classroom singing “My Country ‘Tis of Thee” and copying poems about Autumn Leaves off the chalkboard. In a way… it’s not that I want to spy on my kid. I just want to know what the experience of the classroom is like today, and compare it to what it used to be like for me. It’s that I’d like to go back in time to Arno Elementary and have an adult perspective — on what we were learning, how things were structured, my perceptions of the other kids, the teacher herself, the exciting moments when it was pizza day or library day. What would I think of it now?

Suddenly.. with a pang of guilt… I remember how we all laughed at Timmy Martin when he said that the capital of Michigan was “M”. Thirty brutal little kids screamed “LANSING!!!” and his reputation as a moron was sealed forever. It seems so unjust now. How was he supposed to know? He was only 7 and “M” was a perfectly logical answer.

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