What really goes on in a mind of a two year old when he goes to school for the first time? What does he feel? What does he expect? What does he anticipate? What does his heart tell him when he sees many minions like him waiting outside the gate of his school, just like him? Some answers may never be known but then, there definitely can be many interpretations drawn from the myriad emotions that flood a child’s face on his first day in school.
My son turned two on 22nd June this year. And after a lot of heated arguments, late night discussions and after persistent cajoling and coaxing, I finally managed to convince the hubby that our son did require some space and time of his own. The hubby was never a fan of pre-schooling and was intending to put him directly in a proper school a year later. But considering the way the last month passed, I felt it was time to preschool him. Toddlers in the age group of 2-3 cannot just be difficult, but impossible. They are adorable, cute and innocent, and the next minute they transform into the most incredibly complicated and notorious creatures who can gobble up all the patience in the world! The last one month, while I was at my home town I realized the urgent need to preschool my son. If he voluntarily helped me in some house hold chores and obeyed me more often than not, it would just take any random second to bring out those horns on his head. His moods could swing any which way sans warnings, from extremely delightful to extremely obedient to extremely cranky to extremely naughty! Be it emptying buckets of water in the hallway or be it switching off the computer/laptop when I am smack in the middle of a banking transaction, be it honking incessantly while I ride my activa with him standing in the front or be it throwing anything and everything in our neighbor’s garden, my son can adorn his pest avatar at the most inopportune time. Not that his activities are deliberate, but that his incredible energy could not be channelized the way it should be, at home. And with that, my husband and I reached a truce. We were pre schooling him.
A week later after we reached our home, we enrolled him in one of the nearest preschools KidZee (run by the Zee grp). Although the fees were expensive, we had taken a decision. After all, when we as grown ups search for people of our age group to converse with, how can we expect our kids to be any different? So today 24th June ‘2013 was his first day at school. As I proceeded towards the playgroup area with my son at 9:15 AM, I could see my son gaping in awe at the many 2 foot minions who were busy creating a ruckus, driving their teachers mad. I could see them running from one corner to the other helping the toddlers with their never ceasing activities. My son’s expression to me somewhat read like this, “Oh! I am not the only Gunda in this whole wide world! There are so many like me, and some bigger than me too!”. My son went inside (not bothering to look back at me or take his tiffin box and water bottle) and proceeded to explore his new place. The playgroup area, besides brimming with hyper active toddlers, was filled with a lot of preschool paraphernalia like toys, slides, abacus, slates and chalk pieces, blocks containing alphabet etc…… My son roamed around freely, exploring every nook and crevice of his world and in the process trying to make a few friends (well, that is what I deduced from his actions). I soon made a move back home as the teachers convinced me to pass on the challenge of handling my son to them. Also, the challenge would become a little less difficult if I were out of his comfort perimeter for a while.
So, how did the first day turn out to be? Not the way I expected it to turn out and Not bad either. At 11:30 I went back only to find my son crying and totally mellowed down. He came running towards me and jumped straight into my outstretched arms. He instantly fell quiet and was looking forward with utmost eagerness to get back home. I asked the teachers about his first day and they said, “He played well for an hour. And then when he was tired and realized you were not there around, he finally joined the huge bandwagon of toddlers who were crying their lungs out for their parents/grandparents etc…..Don’t worry! First day for a kid is always this way. He will soon get used to the routine.”
As I rode back with him, he replied with a little ‘hmm’, ‘huh’, ‘mmmm’ to my incessant questions about his first day at school (an unlikely situation as it usually is him asking me too many things while I ride). And no sooner did he recognize the familiar road that led to our home, he became the same naughty self again. We arrived home. On being asked by his adorable granny as to how his first day at school was, he replied after 15 minutes of deep thought, “mum-mumm, tummy”. I made his lunch – a bowl of steaming hot dal chawal with some ghee (his favorite meal – the humble dal chawal/paruppu sadam). His eyes twinkled.
Well, it was the first day after all. Not bad. Let’s hope it gets better 🙂
Cheers & God bless…!!