Saturday, March 17, 2012

Wearing the Green

Do you ever celebrate holidays a day early? I'm sure it happens all the time. Families can't necessarily get together on Christmas day, so they exchange gifts the week before. Or they may not all be able to gather for Thanksgiving because someone has to work the following day, so they may gorge themselves on turkey and stuffing the previous weekend. But St. Patrick's Day? Is it really worth celebrating early?

When you work with elementary school kids, the answer is yes.

Leading up to the mid-March celebration, teachers have been preparing their students with tales of leprechauns and reminding them to wear green. Let it be known, the school is a Pinch Free Zone, so that little tradition didn't quite make its way into this year's version of the St. Patrick's Day mythos. But it was important to convince the kids to wear green nonetheless. After all, what would a pseudo-St. Paddy's Day party be without the wearing of the green.

You wouldn't believe how many of those kids did not wear the green. I guess it just took a while for some of them to get into that St. Patrick's Day spirit. But they got into it when some mischievous leprechauns broke into the kindergarten classroom and caused some semi-serious mayhem. Chairs and trash cans were turned over. A child's jacket was found hanging from a ceiling fan. Cabinet doors were flung open. It was anarchy.

The teacher found a note stating that the messy room was, in fact, the handy work of the little green men. Or are they little men in green? Whatever. The note also claimed they left behind a pot of gold that was hidden somewhere in the room. It was the job of the kindergarteners to clean up while searching for the gold. The gold turned out to be coin shaped chocolate wrapped in gold foil. No one got rich that day. Probably because it wasn't really St. Patrick's Day, so it wasn't really gold.

The excitement of this leprechaunian visit took a while to wear off. Kids were too excited to get back to educational things. They wanted to keep looking for tiny mythical creatures. It helped that soon they were taken on a Spring Walk, in which they would search for signs of spring.

Luckily, they have a pretty short attention span, so the leprechaun pranks were just about forgotten by the time they went outside for their Dora the Explorer-esque adventure. Since spring seems to have sprung early this year, they were able to take a look at plenty of sprouting flowers and leaves. They even saw a butterfly or two. For five year olds, this was all very exciting.

So I didn't wear green today. I wore it yesterday. I got all my SPD shenanigans out of my system a day early.

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