Wednesday, 3 September 2008

Beating the Teacher

Thomas officially starts Nursery School (which is essentially just preschool but attached to an actual school) next Tuesday. I am extremely excited for both him and myself. At his nursery school prior to starting you have a few visits to the school to familiarise your child with the new environment and then right before they actually start the teacher kindly comes to your house to bond with the child on their territory.

Nice, right?

Well I just don't buy it. The real reason they come (though they would never of course admit it)? To totally check us out. They will learn more about our family dynamic from 5 minutes in our house than they would in a whole year of drop off's and pick up's in the classroom. But to be fair she could have just saved herself an unnecessary trip and simply googled me instead. I'm sure my Bad Parenting Chronicles would answer many a question as to what kind of parent I really am.

We are SO not morning people in this household so you can imagine how utterly thrilled I was to get our letter informing us that Thomas' teacher would be visiting us at 9:45am. I started preparing days in advance, cleaning my house, tackling the laundry pile, putting all the jigsaw pieces in the correct boxes like my life depended on it.

But still I was at a major disadvantage. Kids dressed, fed and clean and the house repaired and beautified from the destruction wrought upon it by the kids since waking time all by 9:45? Impossible.

Panic really set in when Rob's cousins wife called to ask me to follow her to a garage to drop her car off while it got fixed and take her home again. Understandably she didn't want to sit all day at some stinky garage with her 2 month old baby. So I of course agreed (semi-reluctantly) and hoped beyond hope that if we set off early enough, 8:45, I could make it there and back in plenty of time to meet the teacher.

I had no clue where the garage was or even how far away it was. I had visions of missing our appointment and being forever branded that mother who didn't even care enough about her child's education to stay in and meet the teacher.

I also had a fear growing within me that my exhaust could fall off at any moment. I had recently had part of the exhaust repaired due to a rusty hole that pretty much made me sound like a rally driver wherever I went and the mechanic said everything else looked pretty sound. But when my car had to go to another garage for another reason (this happens apparently when your car is 10 years old) that mechanic told me that my exhaust could fall off at any given minute. I got the impression he was just attempting to scam me because, well, I'm a woman who knows, erm, zero about cars. So now whenever I go anywhere I live in total dread of leaving the exhaust somewhere on the road behind me.

But lo and behold we managed to be dressed, fed, clean and the house looking as presentable as a house that has two little boys dwelling within in will ever look all by 8:45. (Mostly I concede due to the fact that Eli horrifically woke us up at 6:45 requesting Lightning McQueen.) I did get Katie to the garage and home again. Even better I did manage to achieve all of those things with the exhaust firmly attached to my car and I did make it home by 9:30.

Thomas has been eagerly anticipating Miss Hoult's visit all week long. Though he insists on calling her Mrs Fault. This is becoming a bit of a problem for me because when I have to address her I can never actually remember which is her actual name. I sense at some point I am going to call her the wrong name and no amount of explanation is going to convince her of my sanity.

At 9:55 she still hadn't arrived. Thomas could hardly contain his excitement and had his face and hands firmly pressed to the window (that I had laboriously cleaned of all hand prints and saliva previously) seeking a glimpse of his teachers car.

She did eventually arrive and we had a really splendid visit. Well, right up to the point where Thomas said "Mrs Fault come see my bedroom my mum just cleaned it all up" so that shattered the illusion that I worked so hard to project that we dwell in a house of harmony and orderliness.

I feel sure we made a wonderful first impression.

But tomorrow is another day.

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14 lovely comments:

Mandy said...

Being an educator myself, I would definitly say the home visits are to check you out. Bond, yes, but absolutely check the family and household out. :)

Glad it turned out Ok. If you didn't clean and pick up, I would be worried.

Aprille said...

Oh my goodness! I had to DO these for my class. I am teaching 3 year olds at my daughter's preschool and we asked to do home visits this year, the first time the school has done these. I assure you I at least was not in the slightest interested in checking them out. I was just worried the parents would immediately sense how inept I was!! Funny thing though, my daughter was due to have a home visit from her teacher but seeing as I am the world's WORST cleaner I politely offered to just meet my co-worker at the school so she would be none the wiser about what a slob I am! I seem to still have them fooled into thinking I am still a half decent mom. Most have yet to discover my blog but my PASTOR told my BOSS about it!

Beth (A Mom's Life) said...

The teacher comes to your house?

I would have been a bundle of nerves.

They don't need to do that at our preschool. It just takes a couple of glances at the inside of our car at drop off and pick up to know that the house probably looks and smells just as bad!

jennie w. said...

Wow, I can't believe she came to your house. That would completely freak me out!

Susan said...

That is a lot to conquer so early in the morning. Congratulations!
I agree with you that the school's policy is probably two-fold at best. As a teacher, I think I could have learned a lot by making a little visit to the home before school started. But don't worry, I would have found you completely normal and sane..I'm sure.

Kristen said...

I am sure that you all did fabulous! Let me tell you that as a former teacher, there are many parents who wouldn't dream of cleaning themselves up let alone their house for the teacher's arrival!

I am sure she was more than impressed! :)

Becky said...

I swear you're like superwoman!! I can bearly get out of bed by 9:45am some mornings let alone do a trip to the garage and get 2 kids ready...... I'm sure you made a great impression :)

Lauren W said...

Oh dear... I'm glad that your visit went so well (after all that prep!).
I hope Thomas enjoys Nursery School :)

Claire said...

Man - kids always let you down.. Eilidh's speech therapist came round one day and I thought I'd had the house under control, but then Eilidh dragged her in to the kitchen... I hadn't forseen the need for the woman to be anywhere near the kitchen, so it had been left untouched... No doubt there's a report from this woman somewhere in Eilidh's files that says that she lives in squalor because her mother's a lazy bandit.

Lisa@verybusymomwith4 said...

A teacher visit would scare the crap out of me--'no wonder her child is so messy--the mom is a PIG' ;)

Melissa Wollman said...

LOL! When I first read the title of this post, I thought that someone had acutally beat the teacher up or something! LOL! I was just waiting for you to say that the boys had tackled her, or accidentally hit her on the head with a baseball bat or something.... I'm sure that's what would have happened here! ;)

Glad it all turned out well and that you made a good first impression! :)

Mamasphere said...

I'd be a basket case if my daughter's preschool teachers needed to come by my house! But if they did, they would be firmly planted downstairs away from the bedrooms. You ALMOST escaped, until that lovely comment at the end, lol.

Candy said...

what!?!?!?

THAT IS SOOOOOO UNPROFESSIONAL.

no really- it is.

Tiffany said...

No doubt that the visit is to check you out - how funny! I am sure you were wonderful!