Many local children are headed back to school today. It is way too dang early if you ask me. School should always start around Labor Day. There should be, at the very least, a HINT of fall in the air. How are you supposed to enjoy wearing your new back-to-school sweaters when it is 100 degrees out? Not to mention it costs a LOT to run the AC in all these schools during the hottest month of the year. Stupid.
I didn't mind going to school when I was a little kid. It was easy, and mostly pretty fun. I went to first and second grade at Slate Run Elementary School in New Albany. My first grade teacher was Mrs. Dersch. She was a mean mean lady with loooong straight hippie hair and a permanent scowl. It was common knowlege that her husband shot and killed their neighbor's dog for coming into their yard. Once when she told the class to be quiet, I had a cold, so I blew my nose and got in trouble. It's a good thing my parents already taught me to read and write and do math, because I doubt I learned much from Mrs. Dersch. Here's an idea: before you decide to become a first grade teacher, make sure you like children. In spite of Mrs. Dersch, first grade was pretty OK. I had friends, and enjoyed recess, and we got to carve stuff out of bars of soap.
For second grade, I had Mrs. Huffman. She was nice and smiled, but she was hard to look at because of a large strange bumpy facial growth. I was in an experimental "split-class," which meant it was half second graders and half third graders. One time, I was looking at a line of styrofoam cups on the window sill in which we had planted some beans. I thought I'd try out a bad word on one of the third graders, so I pointed out to Kelly Zurschmeid that the dirt pellets in the cups looked like t*rds (a word I learned from my cousin Jeremy, no doubt). Kelly Zurschmeid told on me and I got in trouble. Another time, during free play, all the third graders were rubbing their feet on the carpet and then shocking the 2nd graders. So I rubbed my feet on the carpet and shocked Gerry Lewis, and he told on me and I got in trouble. See, I almost never got in trouble because I hated getting in trouble, so when it happened, I remembered it.
My favorite thing about 2nd grade was once a week when the other 2nd and 3rd grade classes came into our room and sat on the floor. Then the music teacher would roll the piano into our room and we'd sing songs for like an hour. Woody Guthrie was a big player back then in mid-70s music classes. The best was when we got to have rhythm sticks and triangles and stuff to beat on. Also in second grade, I learned to whistle and blow bubbles with gum. And I got to join the school orchestra a year early because the teachers decided I was bored. (I guess maybe they thought it would keep me from saying bad words and shocking 3rd graders.)