Saturday, September 27, 2008

Samuel and the Terrible Horrible No Good Very Bad Day

Cliff Notes: Samuel hates his school. He doesn't like to listen and makes no exception for his (mean, blue haired, fat) teachers and apparently the director of the school. The 3 year old gets sent to the office. Mom gets a parenting lecture. Samuel cries himself to sleep. So sad. Mom and Dad think Samuel will start a long long career of hating school at this rate. They pull him out and put him in a happier school.
First my mom took me to school. She took me to school even though I told her that my teacher is mean and will put me in a cage and has blue hair and is so so big. I only went because I get a present when she picks me up.
Then, at school we had to do a dance. I wanted to dance with my friend but the teachers said, "no." They made me dance with someone else and hold hands. I didn't want to hold that hand. So I hit it. They don't like it when I hit. I don't like it when they make me hold someones hand.
This got me in my, "no" mood where no matter what someone offers, I will say/yell/moan, "no!"
It was time to paint. I like to paint. Painting's my favorite. But they offered me a smock and I said, "no!" So they wouldn't let me paint.
Then they made cowboy vests for the western party. I didn't get to make a cowboy vest. Boys that yell, "no!" don't get to make cowboy vests.
The teacher told me that I was going to go the doctor's office (actually the "director's" office, but that is how I heard it) if I didn't stop. I like the doctor's office. Every time I go I get a sticker and a sucker. So, I didn't stop and then somehow I ended up in some lady's (the director) office. She was not my doctor and she did not give me a sticker and a sucker.
She told me I had to blow my nose. I didn't want to blow my nose. I wanted my mom. I wanted my mom and I didn't want to sit on the chair in the corner in the lady's office. The chair was dirty.
My mom finally walked in the office. But instead of gathering me in her arms and rescuing in me, the director told her to sit down and made me stay in my little, dirty, chair in the corner. I cried really loud to let her know I didn't like that.
The director talked and talked to my mom. My mom looked worried.
Finally, after a so so long time, the lady stopped talking. I wanted my mom to scoop me up and protect me from the lady and the mean teacher that would be outside. Instead my mom just held my hand and walked me out. I told her, "I didn't have very much fun today." She looked upset.
The mean teacher was outside. She smiled a big fakey smile and said, "We'll see you on Thursday and we will have a great time at the Western Party, okay? Bye!" My mom told me to say, "Bye." I just told mean teacher that, "I didn't have very much fun today."
We got in the car and I asked for my present and my mom said, "Boys that don't listen to their teachers don't get presents." That's mean. I cried all the way home. I like presents.
When we got home we got a snack. Mom offered me oranges and peaches. But I saw the cake on the counter. I said, "I want cake." Mom just said, "Boys that don't listen to their teachers don't get cake." That's really mean. I said, "I want cake" about 6 more times because sometimes when I say something over and over and start getting loud, she lets me have what I want. It wasn't going to work this time (I wish she would be more consistent) because she said, "If you say, 'I want cake' one more time you are going to your room." Sometimes if I say it again, she is too busy to make me really go to my room. So I said, "I want cake."
My mom made me go to my room. That was really really mean.
I was getting tired. Tired and hungry, because she didn't let me have any cake. I wanted some comfort. So I opened the door and yelled at the top of my lungs, "I want my woobie!" "Stop yelling!" My mom yelled! "If you want something you have to ask nicely!" She yelled in a very un-nice way. That was really really really mean. I wasn't going to ask nice. I was mad. So I was going to ask mad. I yelled and yelled for my woobie because sometimes when I do it long enough, she will bring it and throw it in my room. Maybe she couldn't hear me. I laid down on my bed, gave one last yell for my woobie and cried and cried and fell asleep.

My mom woke me up. I was going to be grouchy but she was offering me dinner. When we were eating dinner, I made sure to tell her, "Mom, you didn't have to be so mean." I felt much better after that.
Hi, this is my side of the story:
So, I had been wondering if we chose the wrong school for Samuel. He is only three and doesn't really even need to be in school. On top of that, we put the kid that likes to put underwear on his head and talk like a cat, in the strictest school possible. I started asking around but just kind of left it at that.
Then, on my way home from lunch with my dad and sister on Tuesday, I get a call from the school. They told me that I needed to come get Samuel from the office because he was having an issue with listening. I text Karl, "Oh great. My first call from the principals office. I have to pick Sam up in the office. Wish me luck."
I get there and Samuel is sobbing and angry in the (apparently dirty, that is what he told me) chair. I am ready to take him home and get him off their hands but the director (doctor according to Samuel) sat me down and lectured me about how Samuel needs a consequence for his unacceptable behavior. She told me that kids usually are so sorry to come to her office and they usually just apologize and go back to class. She said Samuel just got mad and yelled, "No" and that he needs to know that if he wants to paint then he has to wear a smock and he does have choices on whether he wants a snack or not but he has to follow other rules and on and on and on...
So, after a day of thinking about it, and bouncing the situation off anyone that called, I finally realized that a) Samuel is three b) I don't want him to hate school already c) He doesn't need to start his school years as a "bad boy." For sure I was not like, "MY angel? He would NEVER!" I know he only listens a small fraction of the time. I know we are a chaotic non-consistent family. I know she has a point. I also know that he doesn't need to experience that again.
I begged Karl, who was sure that pulling Samuel out of that school was the right thing to do, to go do the withdraw procedure (yep, this school is so freaking strict they have a procedure for everything) because I was afraid to go back in there.
I took Samuel to another school where I heard the kids get plenty of playtime and love but also learn a little. I observed two teachers and was amazed at the different atmosphere of the room just because of the teacher, even in the same school. I choose the one that was the least like his last school and kind of just crossed my fingers.
Come pick up time... I walk in. Samuel is studying a fish tank with another little boy. I just sit back and watch. When he finally sees me, he comes running, "Mommy!" As we walked out he says, "I played with a cute friend!" We pass the teacher, we talk a little, she says he did great, I tell Samuel to say, "Bye" and you know what he said? "Bye!"
He was so much brighter and much more Samuel when I picked him up. So, do I blame the other school? No. In fact, I think Eva would have loved it there. It just wasn't for Samuel. Seriously, I never expected this much drama from optional preschool of all things.
Oh, Samuel...

10 comments:

Karl said...

No need to second guess on this one. It was the right choice. No need to break his spirit, especially by a school whose primary concern seems to be brand and product.

Heath'e' said...

Poor kid! That was a Terrible Horrible, No good, very bad day!!! I'm glad you found a better fit for him. Hopefully things will be much better for him. And like you said he's only 3 so he doesn't have to go if it's not working. You really know your kids and that makes all the difference. :) I love your blog!!

Angela said...

Sounds like you did the best thing for Samuel. He should be having fun at school right now not be miserable. Plus if he is unhappy you are, right? Hope Samuel likes his new zchool much better.

mmm.chocolate said...

I love that Samuel is "so Samuel," and he shouldn't go to a school where his "spirit" isn't appreciated. I'm so glad that you found a school that works. It sounds like it was a terrible horrible no good very bad day for you too. I think the most important thing a pre-school teacher can give a three-year-old is love. Clearly Samuel is gifted and will have no troubles with academics when he is ready.

Okay, and I love, love, loved how you wrote this post beginning with Samuel's point of view. Very nice!

Michelle said...

Aren't pre-school teachers supposed to be sweet and loving and able to adapt to the kids instead of the other way around? Especially at that age. You did the right thing. If Alyssa was there I would get called every week :-) Good to see you all yesterday!

Michelle said...

Oh... I forgot... I love the pics of the "doctor's office". Did you tell the Director it was for your blog ;-)?

five-one-and-a-half said...

Reading this made me want to laugh and cry at the same time. It sounds like that old school has absolutely no imagination and can't relate to 3 year olds at all. Seriously! I hope he has more fun at his new school!

Nikki said...

Hope the new school is better!. Samuel reminds me a lot of Ammon. He hasn't got sent to the "principal" yet but he has gotten taken out of primary. something about our primary that he doesn't like. We went to my sisters ward and he was really good.

Alyse said...

Those "doctor's office" pics are the saddest pics in the world -- in my opinion, he is too cute to be sitting in a "dirty" chair in that grumpy lady's office. That was a great story -- thanks for a good laugh.
I found a super-funny blog that you might like too:
http://cakewrecks.blogspot.com/

Abbigail said...

holy cow. I am freaked to pick out a pre school for Kitty and now I know why. That was awful. Where did you get those photos of him in the office? Do they have some freaky web cam or seomthing?
poor baby. Kitty is much like him I am afraid, I was hoping to get an Eva, but she is much like her other cousin, Sam. She likes to say no and yell too. I am sorry, good job switching schools!

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