For obvious reasons I am going to try as hard as I can to remember my kindergarten years at Clifton Fine school in Star Lake New York. At that age we are so young and do not understand much at all in the way of the world. In terms of my overall memories of my childhood, my kindergarten years and prior make up a very small percentage. As I said in my Star Lake post the school there was a small K-12 school that covered a LOT of geography. The town I lived in really only had about 800 people in it but lucky for us we also had the county school.
My teacher’s name was Ms. Van Gelder and I remember her as being a very nice lady. Back then kindergarten was the full day. We had to bring in a “mat” which was really just a small rug for us to sleep on in the middle of the day for nap time. Nap time?!? Who’s got time for naps when you’re 5 or 6 and FULL of energy. I didn’t sleep ever and usually got into trouble for laughing.
One time I got into trouble for not eating my macaroni and cheese. This sticks out to me because of 2 things – #1 my eternal hatred for mac & cheese. This started back when I was living in Illinois and my Mom’s friend used to babysit me. She would make macaroni and cheese for lunch but instead of real cheese or even the powdered dairy dust that is included in the Kraft box, she instead used cheese whiz. That’s right macaroni with canned spreadable cheese “product” mixed in. To this day I will not eat mac & cheese although one time my wife’s father made some shells with real cheese, bacon and gravy and that was awesome but that is NOT mac & cheese. That would be more like a macaroni casserole. The #2 reason I remember this kindergarten incident was because my “punishment” was to sit in the play area – the girl’s section, in a playhouse, in the plastic kitchen. I was to stay there until I ate some. I was not eating any – wasn’t going to happen no way, no how. So after sitting in there forever and wanting to get out I smashed up some, flattened some and moved it around my plate so it looked like less. It worked and I was free at last, free at last!
Other memories I have of that class is that it was warm. I don’t know if the room was orange or the heat was always on or what but when I think of it, I think warm. We used to sing songs a lot and I liked singing “The Farmer and the Dell” the most but also enjoyed a good rendition of BINGO (was his name-o). That school seemed so big and like there were so many kids there (really it was less than 300). Another memory is of butterscotch pudding. We went to an open house one night and back then you went to the open house with your parents. They had butterscotch pudding out as snacks for the kids and I ate at least two. I cannot smell butterscotch now and not think of that school.
So young, so innocent, so much to learn so much left to live for.