He was freaking excited to share his knowledge that he was dissecting from these books. I know that P is not a snake lover, but more of a fact gobbler
A couple of weeks ago, I had to get P out of his class a little early for an appointment. I told the principal that I could walk to the classroom to get him. I relish these chances to see P embedded with his peers. I peeked through the door to watch the class. I see that the teacher was directing activities on the iPads. I peer around the room, honestly looking for P, to see 20 heads following along with the teacher. Then there was P sitting in the corner of the room with his back to me. I could see he was carefully balancing the iPad in his lap, but his attention was focused on the book on his desk. I could tell he was excited the way he was making grand and giant gestures. He was smiling while flipping to the next page in the book. Then I was spotted. One kid taps P on the shoulder and point to the door. I smile and wave at my boy.
The next thing I know the door is flying open P is hurtling toward me. “Mmmooommmm, looook aaatt wwhhhaaatt Iiii gggooottt?” he over-enunciated every word because he was so excited. He shoves the book in my face. I freeze in horror. My worst nightmare was playing out in the fifth-grade classroom. I try to shut the book telling P I would look at it later. “But, look we will be dead on vacation if I don’t teach you now,” he says not so much to me, but to whoever was listening. (At this point it was pretty much his whole class.) Once again he shoves the book in my face. I’m horrified, anxious, and feel sweat starting to bead up on my forehead. P checked out three non-fiction books on all things snakes. The one page he was most fascinated with was a map detailing where poisonous snakes resided in North America.
P was checking out different places and knowing our family vacation would take us to Florida, he thought he was sharing a PSA with me by teaching me poisonous snakes do indeed live in Florida. It’s not that I’m afraid of snakes. It’s more than that. It’s not that I don’t like them. It’s way more than that. I’m firmly in the irrational fear column when it comes to reptiles, including snakes. I’m trying to make a graceful exit without having a panic attack. But I knew P was stuck. There would be no transition from school to the car to the appointment if I didn’t fully 100% acknowledgeP’s new excitement and knowledge about snakes.
Transitions are tricky little things. All our happy little receptors are focusing on a task and then we are expected to stop immediately and go to the next task. Sometimes transitions are smooth, so as parents it doesn’t even cross our mind all the steps it takes to transition from one activity to the next. Other times the same transitions are so complicated that children will disrupt themselves and others around them. P was eating up all this new information about snakes. He wanted to share what he was learning with anyone and everyone. Unfortunately, he was expecting me to relish this new info on poisonous snakes in North America.
We knelt down by P’s locker to discuss poisonous snakes in North America. He happily rattled off facts and stats. I watched him excitedly tell me about rattlesnakes, copper heads, and diamondbacks. I was present with P as I listened to every word he said. He was freaking excited to share his knowledge that he was dissecting from these books. I know that P is not a snake lover, but more of a fact gobbler. It was the first and only thing on his mind to share the snake facts. He finished telling me what he needed to share. P says to me, “Are you still going to be afraid of snakes, mom?”
“That is a yes,” I tell him.
He sighs, picks up his backpack and coat, “I have a lot more to teach you, mom.”
I thought to myself, “You certainly do.”
All my best to you,