Friday, November 13, 2015

Back to School, Back to School...

This week I started working at my children's elementary school as a Teacher's Aide. After the birth of our youngest, hubs and I decided to try and make it last as long as possible with me staying home. That was over two and a half years ago. I knew I was going to have to go back to work eventually, but I was putting it off as long as possible. Part of me dreaded leaving our youngest, but part of me knew it was time and was yearning for some adult interaction!

After the birth of my first child, I had no choice but to go back to work when she was 12 weeks old. It killed me. Luckily she was with my ex husband two and a half days, my mother two and a half days and me on the weekends so I didn't have to put her in daycare. After my son was born I managed to stay home for roughly eight months before having to go back part time to help ends meet. I was so consumed with the luxury of being able to stay home with baby number three that I would get teary eyed every time I thought about having to go back to work.

I had been trying to get a job with the school since April. I interviewed over the summer and eventually a spot opened up. I was already familiar with a lot of the staff and the procedures of the school having spent so much time there as a parent. The first week I trained as a volunteer, getting the hang of the office policies, as I will be spending some of my time there each day. I also got to see a little of the classroom, which was what I was really looking forward to! I was officially hired on Tuesday, November 10 and got my schedule and the teacher's who I would be assisting.

So far I am really enjoying it, even though I feel a little out of place, not too dissimilar to Billy Madison. Everyone has been really helpful and kind. The majority of the kids have been pretty gentle on me. There are a few who have tried to get away with things a newby wouldn't know, but I'm pretty sure I haven't fallen for any of it! Some of them I just want to wrap up and take home with me, like the ones who tell me they're still hungry when they've finished their lunches, or the ones who get picked on and start crying.

My least favorite part of the job is definitely lunchroom duty. All the aides have to work it, but as I'm the low man on the totem pole, I have to work the entire two-hours. Wiping tables, opening ketchup, handing out napkins, spoons, and forks. Today was one of the worst. On the menu was tacos and ice-cream sandwiches, among other things. Doesn't sound bad, right? Wrong. There was taco meet EVERYWHERE - all over the floor, on the benches and tables, basically any surface that could be covered, was. The chocolate cookie from the ice cream sandwiches was smooshed all over the benches. It honestly looked like half the kids there had bathroom accidents.

We are considered a "healthy school" because we serve whole grain foods. Problem is, most of it is whole grain junk food. The majority of the kids today had pretzel bites with cheese sauce, an ice cream sandwich and a frozen icee-type of thing. Not exactly nutritious. I typically pack my kids' lunches because they prefer it to most of the food served, and I control what is in there. There is always a sandwich, some form of fresh fruit of veggie, yogurt or cheese stick and a drink. Yes, there is also some form of treat, either gummies or cookies, but it's all about balance, right?

I could go on and on about the food, but I'll save that for another post. I have a feeling I will have lots to write about now. I hope you'll stick around and follow me on my back to school adventure!

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