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Never Too Much Sleep for the Kindergartener

Posted by Kristen on September 13, 2010 at 6:36 AM
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138.JPGThe kids came running off the bus after their very first day of school. Their little feet barely hit the pavement before they began talking about play dates and video games. These are not things a mother wants to know about the first day of school. I let them ramble on until it was time to go in different directions from our favorite neighbor friend.

K: We'll see you tomorrow morning at the bus stop!
Him: Nah, Miss Kristen. I'm not going to school tomorrow.
K: But Buddy, tomorrow is a school day.
Him: Not every day is a school day.
K: But tomorrow is.
Him: I don't think so. Anyway, I'm not going tomorrow.

I laughed and walked away. I could see how the adjustment to school is going to be different for everyone.

K: How was your first day of school?
Ethan: Fine.
K: What did you learn?
Ethan: Nothing. And there is NO homework.
K: It was the first day of school. I don't think that is going to be the norm.
Ethan: NO HOMEWORK!!! We don't have any.
K: Did you make any new friends?
Ethan: No.
K: Not even the girl who sits beside you? I forgot her name. What is it?
Ethan: I don't know.
K: Did you play at recess?
Ethan: Yes.
K: Seriously? You are five. Are you going to give me any information about school? This was a really big day for you.

His father called a few minutes later.

D: How was it?
K: I have absolutely no idea. He didn't come home crying and he appears to want to go back tomorrow. For all we know, he could have skipped the whole day and just hung out under the bleachers, dealing black market Silly Banz and mainlining YooHoos from the machine. Eat! Dad wants to know what you did today.
Ethan: I just don't remember, MOM. But my teacher did say that we need to get our rest and if we wake up early, we should stay in bed.

I relayed this story to fellow mom of a kindergartener.

"God bless her and every teacher out there who says those kinds of things. BIG gift cards for her this year. BIG!" She turned around and yelled to the boys that it was time for bed.

And that, my friends, is the biggest change at our house since the end of the first week of school. Ethan wants to go to bed at night. We headed out a little later this evening to go to a birthday party and rolled back in an hour past bedtime. The boys took a quick bath and then everyone headed off to bed. Not three minutes later, Ethan and Nathan came wailing up the steps. The sound was deafening.

Ethan: MOOOOOOMMMMM!!!! Nate won't let me go to sleep.
Ethan: He says he won't stop crying until I read him a book. EVERY NIGHT he wants me to read him a book. EVERY SINGLE NIGHT.
K: Nate. It is so late, Buddy. I'll read you lots of books tomorrow after Ethan goes to school.
Nate: I'm not going to stop crying until Ethan reads me a book (with steel cold reserve).
K: Oh my gosh, Nate. Ethan. Go to bed.

They both went wailing back down the stairs. It was 8:35 p.m. and you would have thought it was 1:30 a.m. Two minutes later it was silent. And I hope against all hope that they sleep in tomorrow. No use starting out the week tired. Even if we have no idea what he does at school.


kathleen writes...

I have adopted a 6:30 bedtime for my new kindergartner. Period! He's a mess. And, being a teacher myself, I must admit to falling right asleep with him after reading books. I wake up all disoriented at around 8:30 pm, and grumble because I have to pack lunches (which I try to do at night...we'll see how long that lasts). Yay for sleep!!!

Amber writes...

Today was my daughter's actual first day of kindergarten, and I have no idea what she does, either. I had a very similar conversation with my husband, as well. She wants to go back, she seems happy, but beyond that it's all a huge mystery.

Renee writes...

I agree --BIG gift cards for that teacher. I wish all parents valued their children's sleep this much --classrooms would probably be so much more productive and happy.

My daughter is now 9, and it's still like pulling teeth to find out what she did at school. After she has relaxed a little from the end of the school day, I'll often ask "What was your favorite thing at school today?" That way I get one tidbit :-)

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