Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Bye Church School- Hello Pre-K!

We have been truly blessed for C to attend school at our church (where we work as well as worship). One- it's down a flight of stairs from my office. and Two- The teachers there have been patient, kind and loving to take care of a little boy fresh from an orphanage, not really sure about this whole "daycare" thing, because I'm sure to him- a bunch of kids in a class with a caregiver didn't immediately bring warm fuzzy feelings. When we arrived home in February of 2011 with C, our goal was to return to work by May. When we took C for a "tour" of downstairs he literally froze in my arms. He couldn't say the words, but his panic was palatable. Something about those long hall with cheerful paintings and noises of children made him come undone. Rightfully so. He just wasn't ready. And I wasn't either. After fighting for a year to get him home, I wanted to wear him like a sweater everywhere I went.
So we set up a little school in my too-big office. Train tables, books, puzzles, blankets on my sofa, even a little potty in the closet. C hung out with me while I worked for seven months. Then we re-toured that Fall he was like a different child. He was so excited to go to school. You can see his joy on the picture from September 2011.
I cried for the first week. He wanted to go to school every minute of everyday. I would go in to pick him up at 2:30 and the popular phrase became "No, Mama...I stay...." So we let him stay until Hubby was done working at 5:00. The difference was like night and day. He was confident that we would return, loved being around his friends, and loved his teachers. Ms. Pearl, Ms. Heather, Ms. Judy, and Ms. Vicki were angels in disguise. They were so loving and nurturing of my little guy. Hopefully, he didn't get too much special treatment due to the fact both his parents were staff members. But if he did I can't complain. I know what a difference a little bit of nurturing can do....We called his first class the "International Room" because of the 8 or so kids, three were from different countries.- India, Russia and Ukraine. He flourished. Coming home with new words and phrases on a daily basis. And a love of Dora the Explorer. So some of the phrases were Russian-English-Spanish hybrids.
A year has passed and now it's on to Pre-K at a great Christian school. Uniforms, school supply lists, class rosters, and school calendars. 5 days a week (!!!) Again, I am feeling so fortunate at the level of education he will be receiving. It's going to be strange to not have him "under my roof" during the day. I guess it will just take a little getting use to....
So, thank you church for making my boy feel loved. Thank you for taking what could have been a bad experience and making it joyful. Thank you for understanding my little guy's needs even though at first you couldn't understand a word he said. Thank you for fostering in him a love of learning. Thank you for letting me experience the fun of every single field trip. Except the corn maze, I didn't really enjoy the corn maze. You made C's first educational stepping stone a firm one and I can't thank you enough.

1 comment:

  1. At first I was going to to say MAN look how much he has grown, but then realized he was on the curb. He has still grown but initially it looked like 6-7 inches! He is such a cutie. I am sending Dasha to pre-school and she has seen me drop Camden off for 8 months now, so hopefully next week will go well for us!