sábado, 28 de maio de 2011

Diary of an Infiltrated TA

For the sake of privacy and what not, pseudonyms shall be used!

Some field notes:

I love how Valentina now dances and smiles. She used to cry all the time, used to be so scared...it broke my heart. Now she hugs my legs in the playground and asks me to chase her. She has a special relationship with her shoes and is always taking them off, one velcro latch at a time. It drives us a bit crazy, running after her shoes. Her hair is also a bit of a mystery...I guess her family is trying desperately to tame her wild curls, but I say they should just let them be, they will be gorgeous someday...

The three sisters are lovely. They are some of the oldest ones and are so smart and independent, trying so hard to learn (which they accomplish effortlessly). Their little hands caress my hair as they "play" hairdresser and I close my eyes and almost drool. I love their little selves in my lap, looking in my eyes with impish grins. Olivia is such a perfectionist, a little Virgo in the making. She will give up her playground time in order to finish her snack, one little bite at a time, and will not rest until it's all eaten and cleaned up impecably so. Natalie and her cute little stuttering and her tomboyish independence. We call her Angelina Jolie, for her lips are out of this world. Her voice makes me laugh in a good way. Madeleine likes to "play teacher" and addresses the other students like we do, imitating us hilariously. It makes me be even more aware of how careful I have to be of what I say and do...they are taking everything in. 

Lily has understood, early on in life, what it means to help and be a team player (I'm so grateful to her mother and her upbringing!). We call her our 3rd assistant. She likes to help cleaning up, taking things to their right places, helping the other classmates get to their places...with her wide black eyes and tiny bird bones, she is precious and sings all the songs. But she is also a whiner and cries whenever anybody rubs her the wrong way. We give her a little look as to say, "huh! enough already, right?" And so she stops and goes about her business, skipping along the way.

Peter is a deep soul. Taller than all the rest, he also seems to be struggling with deep issues. I see the word "conflict" stamped on his forehead. I don't know what he's dealing with at home, but I know it's confusing and sometimes painful in his 2 year old world.  His biggest joy in the classroom has been his friendship with his exact opposite, Antonio, a tiny little boy who is not at all fazed by the expectations of toddler world. Together they run and jump and roll around together and have fun, much to our desperation, cuz it looks plain dangerous and usually wreaks havoc. He was the first to use the potty, the first name everybody learned and always eager to be a "good boy". So much so that whenever we have to be firmer and hand him a no, he desperately breaks down in tears. It also breaks my heart. I wish I could make him understand that it's alright and the confusion will lessen with time (maybe)...but even more, that he's not responsible for making any of it better and...he's just two. I guess we should let him roll around more and turn a blind eye. 

to be continued...

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