Tears on water day

Today I spent a couple hours in Ada’s Kindergarten classroom.  Tomorrow is their last day of school, but tomorrow I work, so I went in today to be with her.  And this building is only Pre-K and Kindergarten, so tomorrow marks the end of our season in this building.  And THIS, friends, makes me very sad.

First, it was room cleaning time.  The kids got to choose which area they worked in.  I had the great privilege of sorting and organizing the hundreds of books.  They are all labeled 1-45, depending on the subject, and are supposed to be in corresponding bins.  They are not.  I got to just soak in my OCD splendor and go to town.  Then I found out I’d have kids helping?  Fine.  I rallied the troops, got them excited, and gave them tasks.  Here’s the awesome part – by the time we were done, the boy who was least excited called out any kid who put a book in the wrong box.  He seriously owned this task.  It was great.  But I’m on a tangent.  The point is, the teachers sprayed the tables down with shaving cream and let the kids use their hands to scrub the tables clean.  And since it’s water day, they had their swimming suits on and it didn’t matter if they got messy.  I love Kindergarten.

Then, it was time to go outside.  Their school had just gotten a new playground last week that they’ve been raising funds for for two years, and it’s so great.  Soft, bouncy mulch, fun slides, bouncy pedestal things, they had a blast.  There was a firetruck there that they could go through, they can paint on the wall – free time.  I love Kindergarten.

They have a new patio area where the music teacher had music blasting and a microphone (with no cord) so the kids could sing along.  There were streamers they could dance with.  Michael Jackson was blaring and Ada danced her heart out.  I stood there watching, and realized I was crying.  Yep.  My girl LOVES this school.  I love this school.  Grace and Eli loved this school.

I said goodbye.  I hugged Ada.  I hugged her teacher, and cried.  I hugged the principal, and cried.  I hugged the teacher Ada had last year and Eli had for Kindergarten, and cried.  Everything about this school is designed for children 6 and younger.  Ada can reach everything in the bathroom.  The railings on the stairs are lower.  The hallways are decorated with children’s artwork.  The high ceiling in the library has amazing artwork hanging from it.  Everything is meant to catch the eye of a child, and draw out his imagination.

I’m thankful for the building she will go into next year, but it’s not the same.  It’s more structured (as it needs to be), there is less free time in the day, there are standardized tests, all of the things one would expect from an elementary school.  All of the things that make me appreciate her building that much more.

It’s not just the fun though – she is coming out of there fully reading, doing pages of math homework, ready for first grade.  They saw what she is capable of and keep pushing her when she is content to just have fun.  I appreciate that so very much.

Tomorrow I will be a mess when I pick her up there for the last time ever.


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