Thursday, February 13, 2003

Subversive son

My son, the subversive: if your kids are picking up bad habits they may know my son.
I got a note from preschool Wednesday night to make time to talk to his teacher in the morning. Gulp. So, I headed in and tried to keep a straight face when the teacher presented her serious concern this morning...

The kid was sent home last Monday because he threw up at school, so we introduced him to the Barf Bucket and the idea of letting people know he's going to be sick. After recovering at home the next day, he returned to school where he continued to practice his new skills of asking for a Bucket and also announcing that "I'm going to throw up" at various times throughout the day. He eventually improved his performance by adding "you'd better call mama" to his repertoire.

We were dealing with all this by relating the tale of "the boy who cried wolf" and talking about truth and honesty. It seemed to be going well...

However the teacher has discovered lately that there is an epidemic sweeping her classroom, of children announcing imminent vomiting and requests to call parents. In observing the kids, they discovered my not-so-innocent Elliot was instructing his classmates on how to pull off an illness properly; he was overheard saying things like "you have to hold your tummy" and "say you throw up" and "say your belly hurts" Elliot is thrilled to show his younger brother new skills so I can completely see him doing this with his classmates too.

So, teacher and I did end up laughing over the matter. She wants me to talk with him about health and illness and how it isn't right to pretend to be sick. Sigh. A mother's work never ends.