Alright, this isn't so bad! I can do this! Kids like me! ....right?
The other kids in our class were constantly bouncing and tapping and poking and making random sound effects WHILE folding their arms so the coined "Okay, fold your arms and listen" phrase didn't do much good to settle them down. During one song we were supposed to stand up and turn around to sing. Simple, right? Well between the girl who wouldn't release herself from my lap and another boy, continuing to turn in circles all the way to the front of the class and spin so much that he fell straight onto another boy and then onto a chair, I couldn't keep them all together more or less SINGING. It was at this moment that I realized straight jackets or velcro bottoms just might be the greatest thing the church will ever invest in.
I guess after awhile of doing this every Sunday you get used to it because some of the other teachers were cool as cucumbers as they leaned over, picked up their wiggly 4 year old to plop them on their seat again, only for this to be repeated another 8 times before the song was over. I did feel bad for the Sharing Time leaders though because while all of this craziness is happening, they are trying to teach about repenting and being forgiven to a room full of kids not listening to them. To the teacher's credit, it was a great lesson, very creative and I had to hold back my urge to blurt out the answers to her questions. #oops
Somehow we made it through Sharing Time and I almost forgot we still had class to go to. I was already exhausted. It's been awhile since my babysitting days and I work every day at a law firm ..I haven't been conditioned for that much non-stop energy all at once. I was excited to get in a smaller group so that we could see what these little 5 year olds knew and what (if anything) Parker and I could teach them. Parker and I introduced ourselves and then we asked each of them to tell us their names and something about themselves. First up, "My name is Porter and my dad died."
Does anyone remember the show "Kids Say the Darndest Things" with Bill Cosby?
This kid is a prime example of the talents these little kids have. They can talk about anything! I can't imagine what is going on inside of their heads - actually I take that back, I can imagine because they say whatever thought comes in their head no matter the relevancy. haha I don't know what Parker and I were so worried about, teaching kids is a piece of cake! Just sit back and let them talk. Done and done.
Then the next girl was up and after discussing about how her cousin lives in California she said, "my cousin's parents are broke up." .............................................................
We all think that gossip in the ward comes from Relief Society, but that is not the case. These little kids are dangerous when equip with secrets. They pick up on more than we realize and are happy to share it with anyone who will listen. Without skipping a beat, a boy said, "what does broke up mean?" Oh crap. Before I had a chance to think of something diplomatic to say another boy started singing, "We are never, ever, ever getting..." and then clamped his hands over his mouth. Saved by Taylor Swift! haha I couldn't help but laugh at the perfect timing and even though he was embarrassed I had to admit, he was right on. See, these kids don't miss a beat. The other kids didn't really know what was going on and so we quickly moved on to start the lesson. Whew.
We were given Lesson 22: The Atonement. Again, see picture above. Man that gif has worked so many times for this! Basically shows how I feel all the time about kids but...anyways.... How were we to teach these 5 year olds about the Atonement?! They weren't even baptized yet. Instead, we decided to focus on Choosing the Right. I had planned this awesome lesson complete with coloring at the end because we all know coloring is a staple in Primary. We started the lesson and one kid raised his hand and said in the sweetest most polite voice, "Umm excuse me (I melted), did you bring us treats? Our last teacher always brought treats." Deer in the headlights. Crickets. #oops We had forgotten the treats! The one easy thing we could have done to make them instantly like us and we failed miserably. I am not above bribing for love so I'm surprised I didn't think about this! face --> palm. I promised them we would bring treats next week and apologized many times to those sad little faces.
Well.... my brilliantly planned out lesson lasted a whopping 15 minutes and I had no idea what else to do. Parker looked at me and then said, "Who wants to color?!"
Like terrible teachers, those kids colored for the better part of 40 minutes because we didn't have enough planned. I tried to have them draw instances where they were choosing the right (I know, it was a stretch) but without looking up one girl said, "No, I'm going to draw a rainbow." And so they drew rainbows, whales, bugs, trees, dogs, play houses and whatever else they wanted. It was adorable. Parker is super great and had them also drawing on the chalkboard with everyone adding something different to the masterpiece. He certainly is good with kids!
At the end, the shy girl from the beginning came up and hugged my leg. For the millionth time in those two hours my heart melted. These little kids are handfuls, but they sure are cute. Overall I LOVED it and I'm glad I had that experience. I went home and passed out on the couch; I was beyond exhausted and could only think of how bad I felt for all of the moms and dads who now had to take those rambunctious kids HOME and entertain them all day, every day. I have SO much more respect for parents and I consequently learned that my kids are going to be screwed. Sorry kids! :]
P.S. Oh and sorry little girl who just got used to me being her new teacher.... I won't be there anymore since I was only subbing for my mom. #heartbreaker #oops