So, in order to extract about 2 minutes of info from Big Kid, I have to ask 45,000 questions. I was doing that today trying to get the 4-1-1 on his social situation and camp experience.
"So, how's Mr. D? Is he nice or funny or serious or grouchy?"
"He's great. 'Cept he was a little grouchy today."
"Really? Why was he grouchy?"
"'Cuz eberyone was talkin' a whole lot and stuff and da principal had a meeting and we needed to be quiet or Mr. D was going to smash all of our art."
"What? What was that?"
"Mr. D said if we weren't quiet for da meetin', he was gonna smash all of our art."
(Stunned silence) "Did he really say that? Tell me what he said."
"Dat is what he said, if we weren't quiet he was gonna smash all of our art."
"What did everyone do then?"
"Sat dere real quiet, probably 'cuz dey didn't want our art all smashed up."
(Horrified) "What were you thinking when he said that? How did that make you feel?"
"I dest sat dere real quiet. I was finkin' if he smashed up all of da art, dat my statue of Miranda would be in dere, so I was quiet as possible."
(Furious) "Big Kid--let me tell you, Mr. D will not smash up your art. He will not."
"No, really. Dat is what he said."
"I believe he said it, but I think he was just stressed out and may not be used to working with children and he picked the wrong thing to say. He really picked the wrong thing to say. If he ever says anything like that again, obey him and be quiet but know in your heart that he will NOT be smashing your art, or anyone's art. Ever."
"He really said it, he did."
"Yeah, but he can't do that. Adults can't break people's things because they are angry. If he says that again, or anything like that, feel free to tell him that he is going to need to talk to your mom about that. And no matter what, be sure to tell me when I pick you up."
I then went on to try to determine how out of control everyone was, and he said people were just talking. When I said they're probably allowed to talk quietly though, he said they are only supposed to talk at snack and at the playground (don't even get me started on them needing a snack during a 3-hour program). They don't all work on the same projects at the same time or anything, so it isn't like they need to be silent for instructional purposes. They seem to mostly do what they want with the occasional coil cup or thumb pot thrown in for authenticity's sake. After more interrogation, things got hazy though and I couldn't tell if they really aren't allowed to talk and it wasn't long before he was getting weirded out by all of my questions and tired of talking about it.
Soooooooo, I'm pretty pissed at Mr. D. What kind of creep tells a class full of 5 and 6 year olds that he's going to break their stuff? I guess hiring artists instead of teachers may not have been such a great idea after all. Also, it is at a museum hosting tons of camps right now. No way was there a principal nearby in a meeting seriously needing silence. If so, they picked a dumb time and place for a meeting.
I don't want to be the confrontational, letter-writing, highly-offended mom but I don't want to be paying money for my kid to make pottery in a sweatshop-like atmosphere. It's only 2 more days, but I hope Mr. D can keep himself together.
Big Kid acted like nothing different was going on with Miranda, so I guess that's good. He also really loves art school, even if Mr. D teaches like Kim Jong Il rules.
I'm looking forward to seeing the Miranda statue, let's hope it survives the kiln.