Scott is Star of the Week in his first grade class. We received a schedule during Back to School Night with each child's special week listed. Because our last name starts with a letter near the end of the alphabet, Scott's turn is now, instead of earlier in the school year. I thought this would be a problem last year when he kept asking me, "when do I get to be the star?" But it proved both then and now to be better timing for him.
Last year, in Kindergarten, Star of the Week included making an All About Me poster, bringing in show and tell items, and the grand finale, having relatives visit the classroom. Because I could, I arranged to pick up my nephew (who was 9 at the time) from his private school and bring him to Scott's public school along with Jane. The 3 of us arrived with a treat (Skittles) and books to read to the class.
Scott had fretted all week about which book I should read. He dismissed book after book for being boring or dumb. He worries that the other children won't like what he chooses. Finally, after much stress, we had settled on Green Eggs and Ham.
Scott was so excited to have his favorite cousin, who he looks up to, at his school. But I was concerned that all the hoopla would backfire. We had experienced plenty of times when hype turned to disappointment or even worse, a public meltdown. Once we were seated in front of his fellow students, I pulled out the book to read.
Scott looked at me and said very matter-of-factly, "I'll read it, mom." I knew that he could read this book easily, but the idea that he would feel confident enough to do it in front of his class, took me by surprise. He read the whole thing, which is pretty long, without faltering. At one point I caught the teacher's eye and she smiled. It was difficult for me not to start crying.
Afterward, I told his teacher how surprised I was, and she said that it was something he can remember forever. I knew I would always remember how proud I was of him and how confident and poised he was, but what she said has stuck with me, too, for the last year. That he could feel proud of himself. That he would have this moment when he took a chance and it worked out. His moment to truly be a star.
I also realized that had it been the beginning of the school year, he wouldn't have felt comfortable enough with his classmates to do such a thing. So I figured it was just as well that his turn this year was after most of the kids had already had their chance. The down side to this is that the pressure to do something different or better is greater.
The last few days have been fraught with making decisions about his poster, show and tell items, and his special visitor time. Apparently this year, the relatives (usually just the mom), not only read a story and bring a treat, but also play a game of some sort. I've heard there's been limbo and freeze dance. Scott wants something original. Any ideas for me? Please help me here, I don't know what to do.
I am a little worried about the whole thing because Scott is doing exactly what he has always done prior to these kinds of events. He keeps saying, well so and so won't like that game, or that's too boyish, the girls won't like it. This is similar to what happens before his birthdays when he says, "that kid won't like it and won't want to come." Matt and I end up saying, exasperated, "It's your party! You should do what you want to do!" But he is either laking in self confidence that the other kids like him or he is overly concerned with making everyone happy.
Whatever is the case, he is super excited about Jane and I visiting. He decided to have Sour Skittles as his treat (I have to procure those tomorrow!) and then finally, he chose the book, The Giving Tree. A lovely book, for sure, but one that makes me a little emotional. He said he might read it or just have me do it.
I kind of hope he does, because I might have a little trouble speaking clearly through my tears.