Tuesday, September 9, 2008

First day of pre-school

After apprehensions at some times, excitement at others, a few questions in the positive attitude tone "Mummy Vansh preschool kyon [nahin] ja raha hai?", the exclamations in the sing song way "Vansh pre-school jaane waala haiiiiiii" but most of them in the negative attitude tone, expected from our little boy who I say is born with a reflex to say 'NO' to anything new - "Nahin mere ko preschool nahin jaana! Mere ko Mohit ke ghar jaana hai khelne ke liye"; "No! I don't want to go preschool. I want to go summer camp something!"; amidst all this Vansh finally started pre-school today. It was not an out and out new experience for him partly because he had been going to the same building for 2 years for ECFE once a week and secondly because we went for an early learning conference with his teacher Miss Debra last Friday as a result of which he got to see his new classroom and spend some time there. That was the day when he was dome with "Mummy, I want to go home." After repeating it several times and not getting any fruitful result, this one turned to Miss Debra and said "You go home!" Yeah na rahega baans na bajegi bansuri, we were stunned and had a hearty laugh!

We read a few books about school last night as I prepared him about what he needed to say to who when he needed to use the restroom or when he wanted something. I told him to stay with everyone when they would go to the playground and also told him to remember his room number and the teacher's name just in case he got lost and to notify the nearest adult about the same. I reminded him of the fun things we had seen in his classroom and asked him what he would like to do. But he was deep in thought, probably thinking about all that I had said and so I just let him be.

He woke up with a luke warm attitude first saying that he didn't want to go and after that wanting to go just for playing with Mohit's sake, who is also in the same class. After the bath, getting ready, breakfast routine, as I pleaded with him to let me take one nice picture and he kept acting funny and making silly faces which is his typical thing these days, among the random ones that I clicked I managed to get one picture capturing his spirit perfectly - venturing out slowly looking behind for familiar settings and faces with the unmistakable mischevious glint in his eyes :)

We went with our neighbors and friends Afreen and her daughter Safiya who is in the same clas as Vansh, whom we shall be carpooling with to drop off and pick up the kids. Vansh was slow in moving to the classroom. I asked him when we passed the restroom and he said he didn't want to use it. A minute later, as we hanged his backpack on the hooks outside the classroom and were ready to go in, he said he wanted to use the restroom with his eyes on the crowd of children, teachers and parents inside. We went to the bathroom and I assured him that its okay, he didn't have to worry and we would go inside the classroom together in a few minutes. He held my hand, went inside and as one of the teachers greeted him, he said he would be going to India soon which is his current greeting. So as you and I say hi, Mr Vansh says "Main India jaane waala hoon/I am going to India soon, pata hai/you know" depending on what language you speak. The teacher tried to take him around the class but he preferred to be my side as we walked around pointing out the fun things that he could do. During this time he told me a few times to sit on the sofa outside when I go out. Finally I kissed him and said I'll come after 2-1/2 hours to pick him up. I sat on the sofa for a few minutes and as soon as I got up to go pay the fees in the office, he came out telling me to stay there. Miss Debra gently took him by his shoulders and asked him to get inside and I reminded him that he had to be inside the class and stay with everyone always.

After about 7-8 minutes as I returned and peeped in, he was well settled at a table and rolling out the play dough with a rolling pin. And I heaved a sigh of relief for a wonderfully smooth first day. I attributed it to the recent summer camp where we had our share of separation triggered screams and howls and are glad to be done with them.

When I went back to pick him up. most of the moms were there peeping in from the window and Vansh was looking back from inside the classroom where all the kids were sitting around in a circle. I went in after a few minutes and he hugged me with a pleasant smile. I asked him whether he had fun and got the reflexive "No!" with him smiling all the same. His teacher said he had had a great day.

The answers to my questions were a little more revelaing than the the standard ones "I played" and "I ate goldfish". He said that he played with cars, worked on a puzzle, played with playdoh, ate popcorn. Surprisingly after coming back, he said "Mummy Vansh kal phir preschool jayega" and I say surprisingly because coming from Vansh on the first day itself, and also when Mohit didn't come at all as he was down with fever, it is not a small thing. Said a lot to me about his first day at preschool.

Oh and I almost forgot. As soon as we reached and he was done taking off his shoes, he went inside his room and guess what I heard "I am going to give you 5 minutes, okay!"; "Come on over here! Move on, move on!" phrases he had picked up from his teacher :)


Monika,Ansh said...

Way to go Vansh.
Loved the bit abt him telling Ms Debra to go home....lol.
Pics are so cute.

Preethi said...

Yay!! First day of school is a trial.. I remember the screaming fits we had last year.. lovely write up Neera..

Anu said...

That's a gr8 start to the year :) The pics are really cute

noon said...

Neera - wait for my first day of preschool post! FInally a post I can't copy paste from yours! :)

Preethi said...

Something for you at my blog.. come get it

Suma said...

awww...cutie pie's all grown up now... neera,...just enjoy when he comes home with all those lil tidbits which will make you laugh, cry and wonder when did he grow up so fast...

PG said...

That must be such a releif for you, to know that he wants to go back to school.
About his greeting people with "I'm going to India...." That was too funny! He is a smart boy. :)
About the no's, you know I was also recently talking to a friend here whose son is also this age. Looks like it is common at this age. But, I can so understand what you mean. :D
All The Best with his Preschool!

Mama - Mia said...


first time here and am already in love with Vansh! :)

glad he is having such a super time!!



Neera said...

monika, ansh: Yeah she was so kicked by that :)

preethi: Shall come and read it Preethi, am always so interested to exchange notes about similar situations and learn from friends' ideas. Thanks so much for the gold card :)

anu: thank you dear :) Yes I too was very glad we didn't have screams to deal with this time.

noon: Don't you worry, a few more days and he just wouldn't be ab;e to get enough of his preschool :)

suma: I know I indeed get philosophical about the years that seem to have flown by and more so about what lies in store ahead. Sigh!

mama-mia: thanks so much dear :) Delighted to have you here :)