Friday, June 8, 2012

Back to school!

Come June and we all know what it means to a school-going kid in India. Technically, since this summer break was Abhay’s first ever summer vacation (since he went to a day care that was open all year around in the US), it was his first re-opening day this week. It was the first time he got to experience that sinking feeling one feels as one enters the school gates after a gap of two whole months! After a fun-filled vacation that almost makes you forget that you ever went to school, the reopening day feels like a harsh reality check that reminds you that a vacation like this is only once-a year whereas school is throughout the year and not the other way around! For most kids moving to a higher class, a new academic year ushers in new challenges in terms of syllabus or studies which would only mean more work for them and not to forget, their parents! Abhay for instance, was a little anxious about starting new subjects including a second language this year and honestly, after binding 17 notebooks and 11 textbooks/workbooks with transparent wrapper roll, even I am left wondering if he is actually going to class 1 or a higher class!

As we are slowly getting settled into our ‘back to school’ routine, I read “Frankling goes to school” by Paulette Bourgeois. Though it is Franklin’s first time in school, I guess “first day jitters” are the same for everyone and so Abhay could probably relate to Franklin more than anybody else. At the crack of dawn, Franklin wakes up excited as it is his first day of school. His enthusiasm doesn’t wane as he gets ready and heads to the bus stop. But as he reaches the bus stop and sees his other friends waiting for the bus, he experiences cold feet. He hears his friends Beaver and Rabbit talking that they know how to read and write when Franklin knows neither. After a lot of persuasion from his parents, he climbs onto the bus that takes him to school. At school, Franklin’s teacher Mr. Owl asks him what he wants to do. Franklin admits that he does not know to read and write but knows all about colors at which his teacher asks him to do what he loves. Franklin enjoys his first day at school and brings home two pictures for his parents who in turn have his favorite snack fly pie ready! So Abhay …don’t worry about starting Kannada or computers right away.......start with drawing pictures!:-)

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