Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Roll Call

I spent the morning at Nile's preschool - just hanging out.  I feel out of touch because I don't drop him off or pick him up, so I thought I'd make up some time.  They were in "circle time" and the teacher was about to start roll-call.  I noticed Nile "zipped" his lips and sat on his hands.  The teacher sat on a chair in front of all of the students and had a stack of white cardboard rectangles in her lap.  I could see Nile get excited.  She held up the first white rectangle and it had the name "Hannah" written across it in big black letters.  I looked over to see Nile, biting both lips, hands under his bottom, practically throwing his body towards a quiet little girl behind him.  He kept moving his upper half as if he was pointing to her with his head, and mumbled "Hannah through his closed lips.  Finally, "Hannah" barely spoke up and read her name. Nile relaxed.  Next it was Elle.  Same thing.  No one said a word, but Nile gestured toward a cute little blond girl beside him.  He could barely contain himself.  She wasn't speaking up.  Finally he said, "Elle, that's your name. E-L-L-E.  You're here!" And this went on and on, until all of the names were called.  But if the child didn't make it to school that day, Nile would tell the teacher that he or she wasn't there.
After circle time was over the teacher came over to talk to me.  She told me that after just a couple of days of roll call, Nile would shout out every kid's name before they even had a chance.  So she explained to him that the other kids needed to learn their own names. So she had him zip his lips.  Then he started pointing.  So the kids would just wait for him to point at them to know when there name was up.  So she had him sit on both hands.  But, obviously, that wasn't going to stop him from "helping" his classmates.

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