Stinkerbelle goes to the local Salvation Army preschool. Now, anyone who knows me gets a good chuckle at the fact that my kid goes to a religious-affiliated school when, you know, I AM SO CLEARLY NOT. As in, every time I walk through the doors of the place I am in danger of being struck down by lightning.
But, we chose them because although we’re not religious, we don’t have a problem with her learning about different faiths. And they are one of the best schools in the city, with great special needs support that we are ever-grateful for, and a nurturing and supportive way with the kids that has benefited Stinkerbelle tremendously. Plus they have a gym and a library, for a school with just 3 classrooms, which means That Girl’s experience mirrors in some ways what she will see when she moves on to kindergarten next year.
She loves it. And we think she’s doing great there, so we’re happy to have her there.
Today, I went to pick her up from school, and before letting the kids out each day, their teacher comes out into the hall and debriefs the parents on what happened that day, and makes any announcements about upcoming events. And, as it happened, the teacher mentioned that today was a library day, which means the kids all went to the library for a story and a craft and then got to sign out library books.
I went in to sign Stinkerbelle out, and she came running at me, shrieking, “Mommy! Mommy! I went to the library and I got a book!”
“Great,” I said, and I sent her off to gather up her craft bag.
The teacher took me aside and said, “I had to show you this.” She held up a book. It was called “Children in the Bible” or some such thing, and it had an illustration on the front of white people in Hollywood-style middle-eastern attire, right out of DeMille’s The Ten Commandments.
She said, “I just had to tell you, because Stinkerbelle was so excited to sign this book out.”
I paused, my mind starting to search for something inoffensive and neutral to say at the prospect of my kid bringing home a religious book. Because at such times, I try to bear in mind that perhaps cracking wise just would not cut it.
I needn’t have bothered. Her teacher laughed and said sotto voce, “She saw the cover and THOUGHT IT WAS ABOUT PIRATES.”
I let out a big laugh, and said, “So I see there will be some, er, CREATIVE STORY TELLING in my future,” as Stinkerbelle was skipping towards the coat rack bellowing to all and sundry that, “I’VE GOT A BOOK ABOUT PIRATES!!”
Her teacher laughed as well and added, “Yeah, so… GOOD LUCK WITH THAT.”