Thank you for providing my child homework on the very first night of school. It made her feel important when she suddenly yelled out that she needed to do her homework this morning. I know that she feels like a teen now and I find that that feeling is incredibly important to my girl. (To my normal readers, this is not sarcasm, I am really glad that she got this homework, I just wish that I had had more time to prepare for it.)
The assignment that you gave my girl was to find one item in our household that shows people who she is. One object.
Oh, Preschool Teacher, you have not met my daughter, so I am going to explain her to you.
I could have sent a spatula to school, because she likes to help me cook. She's not a cook and bores quickly when faced with the hurry up and wait process of cooking dinner, but she likes the idea of it very, very much. It's not who she is, it's just something she likes to do.
I could have sent a crayon to school, because she loves to color. She is not an artist and there is nothing about her art that lets me know that she is particularly artistically gifted. She does stay in the lines though and I hear that that's pretty important. It's not who she is either, just another thing that she likes to do.
I could have sent Mulch or Gravy to school, although, I am pretty sure that you would prefer that chickens not come to school. She loves to feed them and she wonders about them everyday; how they feel, if they are sick, if it is too hot, too cold, too rainy for them. She cares about them, but they are not who she is.
I could have sent scissors and glue to school, because it is the bane of my existence as a mother and the source of many arguments. She loves to think that she can cut paper (and fabric and hair) but the reality is that she is just ripping paper while a pair of scissors hangs off of her fingers. And the glue, oh, the glue... but it is not the right thing for her either.
I could have sent a lock of her curls, because it is the first thing that people notice and comment on when they see her. Those curls are not who she is, and even with a bald head, she would still be Supergirl.
In reality, Preschool Teacher, there is no one object that perfectly describes Supergirl and who she is.
She is a believer - she believes in magic and good and love and hope and God in a way that I have never been able to. She has a grasp of all that is right with the world and believes in those things unconditionally.
She is a performer - she sings and dances and mimics so well, that for a moment, you have to remind yourself that the person that you are talking to is really just a 4 and a half year old.
She is funny - her jokes make no sense, none. But the way that she delivers the joke, the excitement that she has when she announces that punchline will make you laugh,
She is compassionate - she will pray for her friends and their parents every night before she prays for herself or her family. She will happily share everything she has if she thinks it will make someone else happy - please watch out for her.
She is tough - my girl is strong, she can handle most things that come her way, and she won't back down if she thinks that something is unfair. This trait can sometimes come off as bossy or like a know-it-all, just remember, she is really only 4.
She is sensitive - if she thinks that she is being made fun of or she is embarrassed, she will cry and she will hold it in for a very long time until it all spills out in one troubled little puddle. I encourage her to talk through these feelings, to get them out when they happen instead of holding them in. The older she gets the harder it is to see that they are there - encourage the dialogue, please?
She can be lazy - she will "supervise" others doing the work and she will make herself look busy if you don't stay on her. I know these things about her, do not be shy about letting me know if it gets to this point.
She is a writer - more often when she has a crayon and a piece of paper, she will write letters instead of drawing. She really wants to be able to write real words and will ask me to spell things for hours before she goes to bed.
She is a daughter, a daughter that someday will be a fabulous, creative, faithful woman who will never fit into just one category.
I sent a microphone as her "Just One Thing" today, because she is performer. I hope that there are more homework assignments so that she can share all of the amazing things that she is with her classmates.
Thank you again,