First Days of School

My daughter has entered the world of Kindergarten and I am not happy about it.  I imagined that this milestone would be a welcoming break for me, but it has not turned out that way.  I just don’t understand the concept of dropping your child off with strangers. Like, I don’t drop anything that I consider valuable off with a stranger, so what’s the deal with school being that way.  I mean, why can’t I do a background, credit, or education check on these people. I totally get why a child would cry on the first day of school because I cried the whole way home after dropping my daughter off.

The first day of school was an orientation day. I learned absolutely nothing on the orientation day.  I kept looking at the door for the other little Black child to join in on the new school year.  After about 20 minutes, I realized that my daughter was the little Black child and I kind of panicked.  I don’t know why I panicked because she has ALWAYS been the only Black child (or Brown as she often reminds me), but I got this pain in my chest and had visions of grabbing her and running out of that classroom saying, “HELL NO, WE WON’T GO”.  I know, I’m being dramatic, but I have no idea what it feels like to be in her shoes and I question our (my husband and I) decision to put her through this lifestyle.  I mean, isn’t it a choice?

I should not have such tunnel vision.  The school is nice. It is a diverse school, but for some reason the diversity does not include people that look like me.  The teacher is firm and very welcoming.  She recognized that my daughter was advanced and on the 2nd day of school we spoke about strategies to help my daughter progress.  She brought up moving her to the 1st grade, something we discussed during the assessment, but I’m not going to push her ahead because I know she is ready academically, but not ready socially.  I was skipped in elementary school and it was quite easy in the classroom, but very hard on the playground and that was a private school.  I can’t even begin to imagine what it would be like at a public school.

So…my daughter has been in school for about a week now and she has not learned a thing. I have not stopped crying and lingering after the classroom door is closed.  I’m having some separation issues and I plan to be in that classroom anytime I can.  In this area, Kindergarten is only for 4 hours and I have basically looked at this school as a way for her to socialize.  We are still working at home on her phonics, reading comprehension, mathematics, science, and I’m thinking of adding some real life art. She catches on to everything quite fast.  I find it kind of fascinating, so we’ve started teaching her about the Presidents. She has already memorized the first 4 Presidents and what they are known for.  I’m proud of her and I feel better knowing that she is quite secure in her ability to do things at school.  I hope that her being secure will allow her to be confident in other areas…like being the only one that looks like her and realizing that her skin color doesn’t matter.  Thankfully, a little girl in her class was just as shy as she was and they have become fast friends.  I have a feeling I am going to be asked for a play date, let’s see how that goes.

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