Thursday, March 29, 2012

This is Guest Reading! Not Sex Education!

Never a dull moment in the life of a Mother of the Year hopeful! So one of my most dreaded Motherly duties is guest reading in my kids classroooms. It honestly scares the crap out of me. I hate facing 18 - 22 kids staring at you and just waiting to pepper you with questions or just make random statements or tell you they already know the book you are going to read and don't like it! So my 4 year old daughter of course cannot make things any easier on me and my reading anxiety and chooses a book that will definitely raise eyebrows! I tried to get her to choose a cute princess book, or Angelina ballerina or one of her cute kitten books. That would be too easy. My daughter beats to her own drum for sure and she chose her "Egg" book. Sounds simple enough but it is a book on how Chickens lay eggs and how they form and show the formation start to finish and then goes on to all other animals that lay eggs and how they are fertilized and how the male animals come into play with the process. I honestly felt like I was going in to teach a LAMAO class! Learning About Myself And Others! Good Lord!

So it is reading day and I grab the "Egg" book but also throw in a cute kitten book just in case I can try a quick switch on my daughter. So I gather my composure and give myself a pep talk and tell myself they are just little kids, it will be fine. One last deep breath and I enter the class and my daughter comes running over all excited. She gives me a big hug and then looks down at the book in my hands and looks horrified! I already know that I am not getting away with the switch! She almost cries when I assure her that I have the 'Egg" book also in my purse. So I take a deep breath and get ready to enter my Mary Poppins on crack mode. I am not sure what happens to me when I am in my kids classrooms but my voice turns all sweet and high pitched and I have a plastered smile and I must look like one of those creepy Birthday clowns. The teacher announces my arrival and now all eyes are on me and the kids start to come towards me and circle me like a pack of wild animals tracking their dinner. My heart starts to race and I get my annoying nervous giggle going on and my hands start to sweat. I keep telling myself I can do this and I need to get my reading on and get the heck out of there!!!

So now I am sitting in the guest reader's rocking chair and the kids are all on the rug in front of me trying to each get as close as they can. The teacher and her assistants sit down also and everyone is now staring and waiting for me. I begin by asking the kids if they have ever been to a farm and have they ever seen a chicken? And I start to get the kids all talking and getting excited to raise their hands and tell me who has seen a chicken. I keep talking louder over them and trying to keep their attention as I begin the story of how an egg is made and how it comes out of the chicken and how it hatches. As I get to the third page of the book where they show a forming chicken inside the mother chicken and it looks like an Alien, the kids start to get wide eyed and some comment on how gross. I avoid the teachers looks because I know they are starting to think what I know I would be thinking, if this book was really appropriate for 3 and 4 year old kids? Oh well too turning back now. I keep going and then we reach the page where it shows the insides again and the egg coming out and it looks like a big egg coming out of a butt! And yes the kids now are getting louder and commenting on it looking like the chicken is pooping. I need to finish this book! I proceed onto how many farm animals lay eggs and how many birds, turtles, fish, snakes and on and on. Then I get to the point where the book talks about "Ovaries" and holding eggs and my daughter's teacher stands up and starts to say we are running out of time and stop me. My daughter looks upset and I decide I am not going to deal with her later at home for not finishing the book. I also stand up and continue as if I never heard the teacher. I read faster and turn pages faster as she tries to navigate her way to the front through the 18 kids on the rug and stop this madness of alien looking farm animal babies, pooping chickens, males fertilizing eggs and Ovaries!! I keep thinking am I going to be escorted out of the school and banned from guest reading and volunteering! Just as the teacher reaches me I finish! I look at the kids who have wide eyes and not sure what they were just read but I made it and my daughter is beaming and now I need to get out of there. The teacher is still looking at me confused not sure what to say as my Mary Poppins on crack character adds some pills and meth on top and I keep avoiding her eye contact and say goodbye to all the kids and Thank them for having me!! I hug my daughter, grab my coat and bolt! I practically run to my car and once safely inside start to laugh! I can just imagine little Bobby and Susie asking their parents tonight "What is an Ovary?" Yikes!

So if I can give any advice...I would say do not read books about pooping chickens and ovaries to a preschool class!!

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