I volunteer in my kids’ classrooms on a quasi-regular basis. I do it because they need the help, not because I have a great deal to contribute to the average 5 year old. Yes, even now, they still scare me.
The first time I went in, the kindergarten teacher had several tasks for me to choose from. One, pull a bunch of papers out of some books and then sort them. Admin stuff.
Two, call the kids back one by one to work on writing their names. Uh oh. Interactive stuff. I never know what to do with other people’s kids in these situations. It usually goes like:
“OK Gavin, let’s start with G….what? Pop Tarts? That’s nice. OK, G….huh? Shoelace? OK…don’t you have Velcro?…OK, let’s try an ‘a’….oh, that’s really gross, kid…” (starts looking at clock)
And then option 3, which was a pile of birthday crowns that needed to be traced and cut. A ha. A manual dexterity task. I’m all over it.
So an hour later, she had a pile of the most surgically precise construction paper crowns that ever existed outside a paper mill. They were perfect. I even made sure they were equally distributed amongst the color selections. If only I had my electrocautery, those babies would have been off the hook.
The next time I went in, there were two tasks to choose from: Pulling papers out of books, or tracing teddy bears. An hour later, an army of Borg-like bears was piled on the desk, perfectly round ears and precisely sharp limb joints ready to be mutilated by the kids.
This last time I went in, there was simply a pile of gingerbread men to be meticulously brought to fruition. This teacher is pretty smart.