This archived article was written by: Shadayah Jones
Ever since I was a little, I wanted to be a teacher. As I progressed in accomplishing this dream, my plans changed. I went from wanting to be a math teacher, to a higher-grade elementary school teacher to the lower-grades elementary. I changed because of a child guidance class I took this year. I was assigned to help with the preschool at USU Eastern once a week for an hour.
As I spent time in the preschool, I had several experiences where the children made me laugh. I work with children who are in the three-to-five-years-old age group. At this age, children are straight forward and tell you how they feel and what they are thinking. Children are fun at this age and I have had many experiences when I see their amazing minds at work.
I had an experience in preschool where a child tapped me on the shoulder. I looked excited and he shouted at me that his friend Garret had a girlfriend. I chuckled to myself and asked if he had a girlfriend too. He looked at me puzzled, then smiled and said, “I have an imaginary girlfriend, but that is it.”
When the weather warms up, the children play outside. Right before the children go outside, I asked a little girl if she wanted to go outside and play. She said no, and I asked again if she was sure. I told her that it would be nice to get fresh air and she replied with “no, I already have enough fresh air and don’t need any more.” I don’t think she understood what I met.
An experience that happened in March startled me, but still could not help but laugh. I was sitting at a table and a little girl sat next to me. She tapped me on the shoulder and said with pride in her voice that she just had a birthday and turned four. It just so happened that my birthday was the next day, so I told her that I would be turning 20 tomorrow. The expression on her face suddenly changed and she became serious. She looked at me and simpy said, “You are going to get old and die.” Now, I am a scary movie fanatic and this is a scene that I would picture in a horror movie. I was a little scared because when she said this, she showed no emotion, but several minutes later added, “but then you will go to heaven, and that is a happy place.” Talk about relief.
One experience that I was not a part of happened to one of the other teachers. In the preschools, you don’t go by your last name as a teacher. You go by your first name. So if I were a teacher, my name would be Miss Shadayah. One of teachers in this class had the same name as one of her student’s cats. As a result, the child started calling her Miss Kitty and it was a hit. Now all of the students in the preschool are calling her Miss Kitty to this day.
I also had a student tell me that he was Superman on the weekend and fights crime in the community. I asked him what his disguise looked like. He asked me if I was blind because he was wearing it. Like I said before, kids are blunt when it comes to their thoughts.
Every day at the preschool, the children are provided with three or more activities and projects they can do. One of the projects was decorating paper eggs for the Easter holiday. They had glue, glitter, ribbon, buttons and many other supplies to decorate their eggs. One girl thought her egg had enough decoration, so she started decorating herself. She tapped one of the teachers on the shoulder to show her the masterpiece she created. When we looked at her, we saw that she had glued eight or nine buttons down her arm. She thought that is was great and she looked beautiful. I do know one thing, it was funny.
One day, the students were playing outside and one of the children came across an insect. Without skipping a beat, he exclaimed, “Sweet momma, it’s a cockroach!”
These are some of the experiences that myself and teachers witnessed. Little children are funny and do the strangest things. As adults, our job is to support and encourage them to have fun and get messy. Not only will this benefit them and help them learn, it creates memories for us. When you are around children, you do not have one day that is boring. They keep you on your toes and make your life interesting, I know they have mine.