Hannah, our youngest child, started kindergarten on Wednesday. She has been anticipating this first day of school for a LONG time. She actually was convinced she got to start kindergarten in January after I filled out the intentions for enrollment paperwork and was devastated to find out she would not start until after summer. If you have any older siblings, you know how “helpful” they are in getting us prepared for school. They not only help us learn our letters and numbers, but more importantly, they inform us about the teachers and what not to do at school.
One of the stories the siblings shared with Hannah was about the art teacher. My children attend a school where there is a dress code and uniforms are worn. One of the rules is that shirts must be tucked in. According to my older children, if you do not keep your shirt tucked in the art teacher will staple your shirt to your pants. Now I know (and they know) that he has never done this, but they wanted to make sure Hannah knew how important it is to keep your shirt tucked in during art.
After the first day of school, Hannah got in the car and was very quiet. I tried to ask about her first day, but got very little response. I wasn't sure if she was tired or overwhelmed, but I knew something wasn’t right. Eventually, the only thing she said was, “I have art tomorrow and I am going to wear a dress.” I told her that art sounded like fun, but maybe she wanted to wear shorts or her skirt tomorrow because the only dress she had was a jumper that would be much too warm.
When we got home, Hannah continued to be very quiet and would not eat her snack. I sat down with her and asked again what was wrong. This time she burst into tears and threw herself into my arms crying, “I don’t want to go to school again. I want to stay home with you forever. I don’t want the art teacher to staple my shirt to my pants!”
It took a while to get her calmed down and the entire time I am trying to stifle my laugh while the older children are interjecting with comments that are NOT helping the situation. “He won’t staple you unless he catches you with your shirt untucked!”
Hannah did return the next day. She wore a dress so she didn't have to worry about it coming untucked. Dad introduced her to the art teacher and told him about the story. That day Hannah came home and was so excited. She informed the older kids that the art teacher is really nice and doesn't even own a stapler! As her sister quietly whispered, “Yes he does!”