Just when you thought it couldn't get any worse.
I have just finished my first week in the 5-8 year old daycare.
I am begging to get the toddlers back.
Not really. But I have made some observations on this Friday afternoon.
I spent the first few days being pretty much overwhelmed by the noise, the constant whine of "Teacher! TEACHER! TEEEEEECHER!" and the incredible cattiness of a group of very young girls. All week I kept wondering why there was a ceaseless cry of "Teacher, she won't let me play!" "Teacher, she said she doesn't like me!" "Teacher, they told me to go away!" until finally, at 2:30 this afternoon, it all became crystal clear and I snapped.
It was a very controlled snap.
I sat them all down in front of me and told them I had never witnessed a more catty, nasty, mean-spirited group of so-called friends in my life. I told them I now understood why they were constantly complaining of the others not letting them play or telling them to go away. I told them that if they treated me that way, I wouldn't be their friend either. I asked them if they thought the Lord Jesus was pleased with the way they talked to each other. I told them I thought it probably made Him sick to His holy stomach.
Then I asked them what the answer to the problem was.
They volunteered, "Be nice. Be kind." And things along those lines.
We ended with a few verses about being kind, being a friend, etc. and I sent them off to play.
30 seconds. Thirty seconds, people! That's how long my pep talk lasted.
So you know what we did?
We went out to the pre-school playground in the ninety degree, sunny, humid heat and worked. I decided if they were working and sweating they wouldn't have time to be nasty, and I was right.
We picked up toys. We swept rocks off the very long sidewalk. We wiped dirt off slides. We emptied and rinsed out baby pools. We sweated and we earned compliments for hard work.
So my observation for the week is this: entertainment doesn't work. Work works.
The reason? Entertainment doesn't make us feel good about ourselves. Work does. It's amazing.
So next week we're going to start each day with a work project. We'll weed, lay mulch, sweep sidewalks, clean windows, I'll have them scrub the parking lot with toothbrushes if we run out of things to do, but by golly, I'm going to work the nasty out of them. All with smiles on our faces and laughing and singing as we go.
I might lose my job, but I've decided if I'm going to be there, I'm going to try to make a difference in a young girl's life.
Be thankful ~