When four- and five-year-old children think about school, what do they imagine? Do the smatterings they hear from older siblings, cousins, and friends give them a fun picture or a bleak one? I was curious to find out, so I asked. This is what they said.
What do you think school will be like?
- It feels like rest time, I think. Cuz it’s really quiet and comfortable.
- Ummmmmmmm. Like church.
- At the first I know I’ll feel a lil scared maybe? At the first. An then I think it might be fun. At the end of school I will want to go back, and when I get used to it, I think I’m gonna like it.
- Colorin’ pictures.
- You will get teached a lot.
- Fun! To ride on a school bus. I’m excited that I can color. When do they do coloring?
- I’m gonna miss my mom. And I hope she’s gonna miss me.
- Be like? I don’t know… Be quiet and write words. And write pictures. That will be easy because I already know how to write people. But not hands. I just do a line down, and then arms across, and then a head, and then two dots, and then a nose that’s a dot, and a smiling face. And then umm do legs. Actually I know how to make another kind of people…
Will it be easy or hard? Why?
- I don’t know. Maybe easy. I like writing in books so that’s gonna be my fun thing.
- Hard. Cuz of colorin’ pictures. I don’t like colorin’ pictures.
- Easy. Because. Because… I KNOW that it’s gonna be easy. You just gotta sit still. Easy! I can already write good. But I’m gonna have to learn to write words before I go to school. Because I needa write words on my books. Kinda hard. I might have to practice.
- At the first it will be hard an’ then it will be easy at the last. Cuz I’m not gonna know the teachers.
- It will be easy in first grade, but then harder. Because there is more stuff to do when you get older.
- Yeah. Easy!
- Hard. Because I needa do math and do doublecase numbers. And doubleknot my shoes.
Do you know anybody who went to school?
- Chloe. One of my girlfriends. All the people that are kids go. But that’s gonna be fun on the bus. Is there beds on the bus? Awww. I LOVE sleeping.
- Kelly and Regan and Aarick. And me. I’m GONNA go to school. And my doll. Hahahahaha. No, she didn’t go to school.
- Makenna has some sisters that go to school, and Ellie goes to school but now she’s sick, and I can’t talk much else.
- Devon. That’s all.
What do you want to learn about when you go?
- I don’t know because I like so many stuff. I don’t know.
- I wanna know how to do everything.
- I want to learn how to read so I can read my own books.
- How to listen and how to read stories to the children. How to write letters. And write my name, and write letters RIGHT.
- I wanna learn about Jesus.
- Well, math. And umm… Breaktime!
- How to count to one hundred and ten.
- About snakes.
- I wanna learn about letters and numbers and taking care of a real baby. And making good soup and carving good, and cleaning dishes and sharp knives.
All in all, not a bad impression. A little bit easy and a little bit hard, book learning mixed with a few real life skills, and being away from Mommy but getting to ride on a school bus?
They’ll take it.
*Thanks to the mothers who asked their children these questions for me, and shared their audio recordings of the results. Social distancing does not automatically prohibit interviews. Yay!
CONTRIBUTOR: Shari Zook