I say ‘first full day’ because it was Small Z’s first full length session of three year old kindergarten yesterday. For the first two weeks they have the kids there in half groups (so Small Z was with eight others) for an hour and a half. Yesterday it got serious and was the regular 9am until 11.30am session. With all the kids.
Many of the them had never been in such a situation before, but there were apparently no tears. Small Z was sanguine as Small DB and I left. I didn’t say anything like, “I’m just going shopping and will be back soon.” I said, “Bye! We’ll come and pick you up when it’s home time!”
And walked out the gate.
Admittedly she has been left places before – the Montessori school and the child care centre. Neither being successful. But this was different. And it felt different for me. Since she hit THREE she has pulled together a new kind of sassy self confidence. This doesn’t always translate to social situations i.e. if there’s only one other kid there and they are kind of in her face, but in a group scenario where everyone is engaged in activities? She’s into the swing of it.
I think she likes the structure of kindergarten. She’s not bored. Everyone is the same age. And there are many activities to do. The two teachers are awesome – a bit older, lots of fun, but you can tell that they will also lay down the law.
We were told at orientation that if any kid has chocolate, chips or lollies in their lunchbox that the offending article would be thrown away. I quote: “Please don’t put those things in your child’s lunch, because when we throw them away they tend to cry.” Ha! I love it.
When I picked up Small Z she gave me a huge hug, showed me her artwork, and ran all the way home next to the pram. She was chilled out and very proud of herself when I told her that she had stayed for a whole proper session.
When we got home, she worked for at least half an hour on her own making ‘Petal Soup’. Which was awesome because I had one of the most difficult days with Small DB that I’ve had to date. Largely to do with her teething and her nap being interrupted by kindergarten committments. I could not believe how chilled out and self sufficient Small Z was for the rest of the day!