Today I shadowed a kindergarten teacher at my sons school. It was a good day with lots of hugs and fun and I learned so much. I worked on a book with a small group of children as we practiced their rhyming, read to them during story time, tied about 300 shoes and just had lots of fun. I also took a ton of notes and really got along with the teacher I was matched with. It turns out that I taught her class in November during the Great American Teach-In so it wasn't totally unfamiliar.

I think the very best part of the day was lunch time though. She dropped the kids off and told me I could take a break for 30 minutes. Not really having much to do I peeked into my sons class for a quick hug. Turns out that his teacher and one of the aides was out and so it was one older aide and one older substitute who had obviously had enough. It's all special education children and all have different abilities. Most were coloring and getting ready for their lunch but over in the corner was a face I hadn't seen before. John is new to the class and at only three years old looked so very tiny. He has downs syndrome and totally non verbal. John has his very own desk and seemed content with whatever was given to him to play with. They weren't quite ready to go yet so I talked for a bit and went for a quick walk to check messages, emails, etc.

I got back just as they were walking to the lunchroom and having a very hard time. The assistant asked if I could sit with John who, because of lots of allergies, had brought his lunch. Not a problem I said and we sat down to open up his lunch. He jumped right in! John was VERY hungry and began eating a part of his sandwich and then looked at me and put his hands together in a fashion that I recognized immediately. John was doing the sign for more. I did it back to him and his face lit up and I gave him another piece of his sandwich. This became our game and as the other children joined us with their trays we had a little talk. I explained to them that John was going to need some very special friends to keep an eye on him. That he was not into the games they played like pushing or running and that because he was smaller then them they should become his big brothers and sisters. The kids all told me how they had each helped him at one time or another and I was convinced that they understood.

I then looked over as my class was lining up to go back to class so I left John in the hands of one of the Assistant Principals who had come to help. I think lunch with John was my highlight today and I can't wait to do it again. I have tons of notes and plans of how I will organize my own class room when the time finally arrives. This was worth a vacation day....

mysplitpersonality mysplitpersonality
36-40, F
1 Response Feb 20, 2009

he was/is and my little man says the whole class will be taking care of him... :) I bought some stuff for the class treasure box today, just a little thank you gift for letting me visit