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Day in the Life of an Idiot

The Journal of Lyda Morehouse

October 7th, 2008

Dropping the Education Ball... so I Have To @ 10:28 am

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I wasn't on the Internets yesterday because I spent the morning being a chaperone for Mason's class for a trip to the Ordway. Then I spent the afternoon catching up on all the housework I didn't do in the morning... including baking chicken (turns out Mason LOVES chicken drumsticks, and he requested that we have the same meal two nights in a row.)

Anyway, the Ordway show was a lot of fun... for me. As I told Shawn afterwards, I wish that *I* were Mason's full-time teacher. Because, you know, in retrospect and with 20/20 hindsight and armchair warrioring and all that stuff, my ideas are *always* cooler. There was for these kindergarteners, many of whom have never seen live theatre of any kind before, no prep. No explaination about what they were about to experience. For a teacher who seems so into rules, I was surprised there wasn't even a moment when she explained the types of behavior that are expected when seeing a play (ie, when the lights go down, voices get hushed.) Because, believe it or not, those are learned behaviors. Most of the kids, when I asked them afterward on the bus, didn't even know what to call what they'd just seen. Tina, for instance, kept saying, "Yeah, I liked the movie."

It was a play. It was not just a play, but a musical. From India. This was the show we watched: Katha Dance Theatre's Sundari Aur Nag.

I asked Mason whether or not the class retold the story of the play, talked about the play, plays, musicals, dancing or even India afterward. He said, "No." Then, knowing us so well, he added, "I guess the teacher kind of dropped the ball."

In the words of a certain VP candidate, "Ya think?"

I got the sense that the trip to the Ordway was very much a surprise in that even the teacher didn't know the class would be going until a few days ago, but... she knew well enough in advance to put a notice in the Thursday folders last week. That's two days in which there could have been some discussion about plays, behavoir at theatres, etc. Given that they're currently learning about the difference between fiction and non-fiction, it seems that a trip to the theatre is a perfect opportunity to talk about and reinforce the experience they're about to have. I was able to google information about the performance in about two seconds. It's a re-telling of BEAUTY and the BEAST for chrissake. There are about a million children's picture books of the beauty and the beast. Seems to me, it was ready built for a whole lot of discussion and retelling.


I guess I'm off to the library to find some books about India and a nice picture book of Beauty & the Beast for Mason. If his teacher won't reinforce her own lessons, then I will.
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Date:October 7th, 2008 05:39 pm (UTC)
Huh, weird. Why didn't the teacher let the kids know what was going on? I bet there's some kind of story there, but I don't know what.

Day in the Life of an Idiot

The Journal of Lyda Morehouse