January 17, 2008

Head of the class

Stew took Claire to school today to see what she thinks of the Early Childhood Family Education class being offered through our local school district. Don't tell Momma, but they almost didn't make it to the sample class because Stew was thinking it started at 11:30am instead of 10:30am. They scrambled to get ready on time and, surprisingly, Stew showered! Luckily, it turns out the school's only about a five minute car ride, so they were actually early. And if any of you are wondering about the photo at left, it's Arvid Engen from the late-1980's TV show, Head of the Class... which also starred Howard "Johnny Fever" Hesseman.

Upon arrival at the school, Stew and Claire found an instructor, two tiny infants, four toddlers, one (insane) preschooler, and six members of The Hot Mom Club (see photo at right). Since Claire is between 15-16 months old, she's still considered an infant in terms of program curriculum. For the first 15 minutes, it was play time. And play time for Claire when other children are around consists of her standing in one place and having a 2-minute stare-down with each of the other kids. She eventually wandered to a table where there were a couple play (mobile) telephones, so she picked up one of them and carried it around until it was time to take a tour of the facility.

The tour lasted all of five minutes since they only had an infant room, a toddler room, a preschooler room and a sibling care room to show the parents and children. Then it was back to the main classroom for circle time (similar to a reading circle). Circle time today consisted of placing carpet mats on the floor in the form of a circle. All the moms and Stew sat on the mats with their respective kids. The infants just hungout in their strollers. Slackers! Apparently, Claire was not in the mood to sit, but she didn't fuss too much. Then the instructor went around the circle and taught the group how to sing a song for each child. Claire's song went like this:

Hello, Claire!
Hello, Claire!
Hello, Claire!
We're so glad you're here!
(clap, clap, clap, clap...)

Unfortunately, Claire didn't clap at the clapping part (not for herself or any other child), but neither did any of the older kids. Since Stew viewed this as a form of competition, he chalked it up to a tie. Nice job, Claire! Then the instructor taught the group a song about snowmen that made Stew feel very uncomfortable. You be the judge. The song goes like this:

Start by holding up five fingers then begin singing,
Five little snowmen fat (your arms make a circle in front of your belly),
Each had a funny hat (touch your head),
Out came the sun and melted one (take down one of your five fingers),
What a sad thing that was (make a sad face),
Down, down, down, down (move both hands down toward the floor),
Four little snowmen fat... (the song repeats until there are no snowmen left)

After Stew heard the first line of the song, he started envisioning pushing Claire in a cart through the grocery store. They turn down the snack aisle and encounter a slightly overweight person browsing the Cheetos shelf. In Stew's vision, Claire points at the person, then puts her arms out in a circle in front of her and starts yelling, "Fat! Fat! Fat!" And then there's the rest of the song that goes on to tell the story of dying snowmen. Apparently it's never too early to teach a child about death and misery... not to mention judging people (and snowmen) by their physical features instead of the content of their character.
But despite the uncomfortable song, everything else seemed to be real positive. Stew signed Claire up for a morning class (he will also attend). Luckily, the preschooler will not be in her class. Apparently the kid was actually quite normal, aside from him constantly climbing up on bookshelves in order to reach push toys that were hanging on the wall. His favorite push toy seemed to be this mobile bubble with balls that bounce inside the bubble when you push the toy. Stew was visiting with an instructor when he noticed the preschooler repeatedly pushing this toy into Claire's feet. But like the pro she is, Claire simply stood her ground. She'd look down at the toy that was bumping her feet, then she'd look up at the little boy with a "What the heck do you think you're doing, Dipshit? I don't think you know who you're messing with" look on her face. Eventually, the boy's mother saw what was going on and came over and grabbed her kid while Claire continued her search for another stare-down competition.

And before Stew and Claire left for home, the instructor made it a point to tell Stew that there are other stay-at-home dads enrolled in the program. This seemed to comfort Stew a bit because he was feeling a bit nervous about members of The Hot Mom Club constantly fighting over who gets to sit next to him during circle time. He remembers how uncomfortable he felt in college always having coeds hitting on him. At least now there will be other guys around to give the hot moms attention.


Anonymous 4:20 PM  

If Stew thinks the moms are hot in ECFE, wait until elementary school - when they have more time to work out! Our dad spends a lot of time working on "Parent Teacher Organization" projects and "Running Club" after school. He has been known to meow at a hot mom or two. It's a great show when he's been at a "school party" and comes home to tell Amy all about which mom wore which low rise jeans, etc.

Elementary school also rocks, because there are no poking, noisy kids around and I can nap in their beds.

Off to snuggle on the top bunk for a few hours.
Lexie the Cat

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Commentary from a stay-at-home dad on daily happenings and misadventures while helping raise a wonderful little girl. The goal is to employ wit, sarcasm and/or humor to make the blog pseudo-entertaining. Then again, setting goals never really worked for me, but maybe you'll chuckle anyway.

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