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Teacher Big Guy’s classroom

Submitted by on Tuesday, 31 March 2009 No Comment

teacher_big_guyIf I play my cards right, I won’t have to lift a single flash card to get Boots ready for kindergarten.

He and his brother will take care of it. And they’ll even think it’s fun. This might be my best parenting scam to date.

Boots has had kindergarten envy since the first day we left Big Guy at the promised land and forced Boots to return, alone, to preschool. He tried every con he could to get in the door that first week – wearing his backpack and nonchalantly walking with the crowd, showing the teacher his lunch box as if it were the kindergarten equivalent of the golden ticket.

Big Guy, meanwhile, loves to show off what he’s learned and likes being in charge. Add an easel and it’s the perfect combination.

Teacher Big Guy’s class is now in session. It includes lessons at the board – Dry Erase side only, because chalk is for sidewalks these days – art projects, recess and snacks. It’s a perfect replica of his own day at kindergarten, except at warp speed. No story time, though, because Boots thinks he already knows how to read and prefers to do that himself.

“First we’re going to do letters,” Big Guy will say, drawing at the board and asking Boots what the letter is.

“B!” he’ll shout. Most letters are B, due to all the time Boots listened to Big Guy learn to spell his own name. For the longest time, Boots thought his name was spelled the same way.

“No,” Big Guy will offer gently. “It’s C. C for car. K-K-K. Now, let’s try another.”

It’s amazing how a child so easily frustrated with his own foul-ups can show such infinite patience when teaching someone else. It reminds me once again how alike Big Guy and I are.

And it’s stunning that Boots, who usually chafes at any sign of brotherly bossiness, will sit there and happily do Big Guy’s bidding.

He’ll go through a half dozen letters the move on to numbers – Boots nails these, thanks to Thomas the Tank Engine – with nary a snit, not a single, “No, Boots, no! You’re doing it all wrong!”

The real beauty of it all: Big Guy spends a half hour cheerfully practicing numbers and letters, something he’d howl at if asked to sit at a table and do it. And his physician-like scrawl definitely needs the practice.

I hoping we can ride this one all the way through college. Why pay tuition for two when Big Guy can simply come home and teach Boots what he’s learned?

Copyright 2009 Debra Legg. All rights reserved.

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