I sometimes joke that I’m going to strap a GoPro camera on you to find out more about your school days. Do you eat all your lunch, or give it away? What books do you read? What equipment do you play on during break times? What are you learning? What do you say in class? What artwork are you doing? How often are you buying popcorn from the tuckshop? What do you chat about to your friends?
It’s weird how there’s a whole chunk of your day that I know virtually nothing about, aside from snippets from you here and there, and an overall “he’s doing well” from your teacher (we will get more detailed reports in time). Truth is, as curious as I am about your general progress, happiness and development at school, I’m also curious about the mundane (see above) and the quirks, and the engagements and interactions I’ll probably never know about.
And while I don’t *need* to know about them, I *like* to know about them, not from a “I’m going to sort that kid out for teasing you” angle, but from a “I like learning about you, and what you do, and what you say”.
I get that as parents we don’t always know everything about our kids, but this is a new chapter I know virtually nothing about. Here’s how a regular conversations goes when I see you after work. Note: I don’t say “How was school?” anymore. I realise that it’s a daft vague question usually met with a “fine”.
Me: If you could rate school today, what number would you give it? (10 is the highest, 1 is the lowest)
You: A ten!
Me: What was the best thing that happened to you at school today?
Me: Who did you play with at break?
You: Some girls.
Me: What are their names?
You: I have no idea (incidentally, “I have no idea” is something you’ve picked up from me)
Me: Did you do art today?
You: I have no idea
Me: Did you enjoy cricket today?
Me: Did you hit a ball?
You: I only threw balls
Me: Why aren’t you hitting them?
You: Coach is teaching us to hit, but we haven’t hit them yet
Me: Are you having any problems at school?
Me: Did you eat popcorn today?
Clearly you’re not into the mundane, and that’s okay. You’re happy, learning and fitting in well. It still doesn’t stop me from wanting to see who your friends are, what games you’re playing, and how hard you’re throwing the ball.
PS: If a kid was teasing you, I’d want to sort it out. Even though I have a pretty good feeling you wouldn’t be bothered by anyone’s teasing you.
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