Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Days of the Week

My job this year is with an organization called Jumpstart. An Americorps partner, Jumpstart works with Pre-K children to develop social and academic skills to prepare them for Kindergarten. So on Tuesdays and Thursdays I work with a team of UVA students and 4 year olds in a two hour session where we sing songs, make plans, read books, and just play!

One of the girls in my Jumpstart group-- we'll call her Mary-- is incredibly smart and so I try and find things to challenge her each day... lately I have been writing her a message on our white board for her to read and add on to.

Yesterday my message to Mary said,
Good morning friends!
Welcome to Jumpstart! Today is T_____, February 24, 2009.
Today we will make puppets.

I asked Mary to read me the message and fill in the blank. She read it and promptly told me that Today is Tuesday. Then her sweet little face squished up in confusion and she asked, "Miss Shannon, why is it Tuesday? It's the third day of the week... Sunday, Monday, TWOsday... so why is it Tuesday?"

It took me a minute to realize how hard she was thinking about this and why she had gotten confused. I laughed and wrote out the number 2 and TWO-sday and explained that it sounds the same as the word Tuesday. What a thinker!

A little while later I was playing in the housekeeping center when Mary and her partner Lanita came walking by whistling. I explained that I can't whistle and Mary promptly gave me a lesson on the proper placement of your tongue when you are trying to whistle. I practiced and proved that I am indeed incapable of whistling. She smiled, patted me on the shoulder and said smugly, "It's ok. You just need a little practice." :: collapsed in giggles ::

Monday, February 23, 2009

Quotes of the Day

"Holy moly that voice is cute!"
-- a 7 year old upon hearing me speak.

Me: I have to go soon.
Scarlett: I thought you were staying an hour!
Me: I am... it's almost been an hour.
Scarlett: No way! An hour is when a minute lasts until like... 630.

Monday, February 16, 2009

Quote of the Day

I was observing in a 1st grade classroom today... I walked in and within 30 seconds this small girl with a head full of braids marches up to me and says,

Did you know that bananas can change diarrhea?

Me: (trying to keep a straight face) Oh really? Do they make it better or worse?

Girl: Better. Cause one time I had a diarrhea and I couldn't get rid of it until mom gave me a banana.

t.m.i. :)

Friday, February 13, 2009

Power of One

I am rereading The Power of One by Bryce Courtenay these days... delighting again in the story of an unlikely little boxer named Peekay in South Africa. It's fun to read it again with the history of South Africa now in my head... I understand much more of the complicated history and context!

Peekay is this adorable character who has great insights about the world as it begins to unfold for him... this was my favorite of today:

"I settled back happily into the corner of the large green leather seat and proceeded to lick the sucker. One and a half suckers in less than an hour was an all-time happiness, and having a real friend was another."

Thursday, February 05, 2009

poor no man.

There's a little guy in one of my Pre-K classes with whom I have a morning ritual... he rolls into class looking more like 16 than 4, a little thug-like, but full of goodness.

I sit at the table and reach out my hand in a fist, call his name, and say, "Is it time?"

He usually looks at me. Looks down at my fist. Shakes his head.

A few minutes (or sometimes hours) later he will walk up to me and say, "Miss Shannon. It's time." and extend his own little fist to give me a pound. :)

Well this same sweet guy can't say the "s" sound if a word starts with the letter S (snake, sound, snip, silly). We had some snow this week and before recess one day he exclaimed,

I'z gonna play in the no!
I'z gonna make a no man with no balls!

Took us a minute to figure it out... :)