Monday, September 24, 2007


I help in the youngest lad’s kindergarten classroom every week at centers. I’ve also helped outside of the classroom, like tearing along perforated edges a total of 23 workbooks containing 35 8-page booklets each, stapling each booklet in two places. Pretend it’s a word problem, and you’ll count up a total of 805 booklets, each folded in half before being stapled. In two places.

When volunteering for this assignment, I knew it was drudgery. The morning kindergarten teacher, Mrs. N., was in charge of doling out this task, explaining how she wanted it done, down to the proper Ziploc bags for the booklets to be placed into. She counted out 35 bags, each one to hold 23 of the booklets. She had a variety of bags, and she sorted each one. “I’m very particular about things being exactly right.”

Yes, I could see that.

Last week, I was in the class for centers, and she was showing me what my center entailed. The kids would be making patterns by using two animals from “Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What do you See?” They would color the animals, and then put them down in AB/AB order.

Mrs. N. made comments about the previous person in charge of the center. This parent had let the kids color the animals any color they wanted! That’s right. The kids got to choose the color. Horrors because that meant the pattern didn’t go, for example, blue dog/purple cat, blue dog/purple cat, blue dog/purple cat. Now, that’s a pattern. But what did the kids in the previous class have? Things like green dog/pink cat/blue dog/brown cat. What the hell kind of pattern is that, she wondered? [She didn’t really say “hell,” of course, as she is a kindergarten teacher.]

I smiled. I said I understood. And then I said, “I get it. You’re really looking for OCD, OCD, OCD.” Having been hanging out with her as puke boy has been going to class for nearly a month now, I knew she was up for the joke. She didn’t argue the point at all. She laughed good naturedly. Man, I love those teachers at my kids’ school. I really do. [Well, except the anti-immigrant, anti-breeder teacher.]

Here's the lad's pattern, the creation of which was overseen by me, center parent:

Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What do you See?[Disclaimer: I definitely have OCD tendencies, so if you’re personally offended that I could be making fun of what I grant you is a terrible disorder, get over yourself.]


MamaGeek @ Works For Us said...

I so get that too! Talk about the right wo-man for the job!

Jeni said...

Having raised my kids -who are compulsive slobs (a lot like me in that respect so some of my neighbors and friends would say) -and having my granddaughter around all the time and who has some OCD tendencies -see Autism information on that -the only thing I tend to get hyper about to the tune of at least a bit OCD is washing dishes and how to put them in the drainer and on a towel by the drain sink too. Some people just don't do it RIGHT ya know and to tell them the RIGHT way to do it just creates way to much tension for everyone so now, I guess it's gonna be my lot in life to be the dishwasher so I can make sure the dishes are all placed correctly in the drainer and on the counter. My older daughter would say I have other aspects that would classify as OCD but I don't believe her. Can't be possible and what would she know about that anyway? Only thing she is OCD about is shopping!

chichimama said...

Ah, we are on Brown Bear Brown Bear at C's school as well. I am very, very over that book.

C's teacher is the opposite, she pulled me aside today to tell me not to stifle C's creativity. Apparently he had wanted to color his bear orange, but was afraid to tell me because I told him bears were supposed to be brown. Sigh.

Jen B said...

LOL, she would hate the way I home educate. I'm lucky if I get the alphabet in the right order on the wall. I am OCD with cleanliness though. Horrible trait when running a home child
I can so relate to jeni's comment. We had to stay at a friend's house for the last month and my cleanliness went right out the window. Now, I'm unpacking and trying to get the boys back to OCD clean once
You did a great job on the patterns. I'm sure dog cat dog cat with any colour would work. How do you get 35 children to keep those ziplog bags in order? That's a

Gina said...

I am exactly the same as that teacher.

Jillie Bean (AKA Bubba's Sis) said...

(Raising hand) OCD? Yep. That's me. That teacher would love me.

jenica said...

Hahahahahahahahahahaha. ha. ha. ha

and i absolutely love your sweet disclaimer to all the sufferers out there.

i like jeni am only OCD about the way dishes are loaded. it's just easier if you put each type of silverware and seperate containers! why don't people get that!!!

Kelly O said...

Heh. I'm down with OCD, yeah you know me.


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