Wednesday, September 16, 2009


Yeah, I'm just naming tyke posts made up words at this point...but I took notes today! So you get *Accuracy* and *Authenticity* which you all should really value in a tyke post.

Now, normally I would go about this chronologically- because that is how I think of things- in order to make sure that I don't miss anything exciting. In the past this has made for what I am sure were very tedious accounts of my day at school. "Well, in first period...." So today I am going to try and break away from that pattern. Namely because what I really want to tell you is that during garden time a little girl was balancing on this plastic tyre type thing and asked "Do you want to watch me and then clap?"

The tykes were moody today. Variable. Changeable. Mercurial if you will. In one of my reception classes I got mixed up with how I was planning to start the class so instead of using a story to do a vocal warm up to-- I just started singing. Singing with hand motions. Sound effects singing. Illustrating the sound and the actions together. And the kids were doing a fantastic job. They were pitch matching. They were singing in unison. They were singing with good, loud voices. They were all engaged. They were giggling in a "this is fun" sort of way that didn't disrupt the entire class and didn't turn into a "look at ME" sort of giggle. We kept it going for a good 5 minutes longer than I would have thought possible because it was just flowing and it was beautiful and gosh darn it *I* was having fun. So we drove their teacher from the room. No worries.

Then we tried singing the name song. Nope. For some reason this class just does not get the concept of singing in call and response form. I tried beating that dead horse for longer than was strictly necessary because we had just moved mountains with our miracle vocal warm up. But to no avail. They were gone and out of it for the rest of the class. We even sang a song where they have to divide up by gender and that didn't work either. "All the boys raise their hands! No, you're a girl. You're a boy, raise your hand? No?" Right then. Whatever.

In one of the nursery classes I walked in on a show and tell presentation which consisted of an impressive rendition of "Mama Mia" including dance routine. Well done you adorable little 3 year old boy! They were delightful and though they can't keep a beat to save their little tyke lives, they did do a creditable pig pile hug at the end of class- and you have to love them for that.

Linda and I did music club together. I was fried by this point having had one 15 minute break wherein I researched songs for their nativity play for Christmas. Fortunately Linda and I had independently come up with brilliant plans for music club. It is amazing how much faster time flies when there are two of us and twenty tykes.

Linda started it out so that I could recover my brain a little, (I was grateful) and it was interesting to see how we have different approaches. She's very good at songs and props and general tyke demeanor. She has a lot of tools in her tool box. I am very good at using whatever input the tykes will give me and shoving it into a song. Example lyric "we're all spitting our tongues, all spitting our tongues, la la la la we're all spitting our tongues." Admittedly I'm not sure what "spitting our tongues" means other than that a kid was ignoring me and spitting to himself across the circle and that was the correct number of syllables. It got his attention, the tykes enjoyed the spitting, and then everyone clamored to be the next to suggest an action. Today we got to be spiderman AND spidergirl. (Is there even a spidergirl? I don't know.)

Then there was the potty incident.

More properly the potty incidentS.

More properly the "oops" lake.


The thing is that with 20 tykes of varying ages, none of whom are more than passably familiar to either Linda or me? It is really easy to fail to recognize the signs that someone needs the toilet. Like they keep standing up, but are too shy to ask to use the toilet so they keep sitting down when we tell them to. (You're such a good little boy! I'm so sorry I didn't understand what you needed!) Okay, so that was E's excuse. But N? You're nearly 5. And you know me. E's mother was watching from the hallway and came in once she realized what had happened. So he got cleaned up fairly quickly. Then we noticed that there was more than just a dampness, there seemed to be a puddle. So we moved the tyke circle to the other side of the room. At which point it became clear that N. had also had an accident. Most of which was hidden under a rolling bookshelf. It was a giant pee lake. That, like, 4 or 5 different tykes were all sitting in. Awesome. I swear we're good and observant teachers. Honest.

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