Saturday, 28 May 2011

Kindergarten Diplomacy

 So I've been teaching for around two years now, on and off, and teaching Kindergarten for about a year of that, which has been pretty great to be honest. If you like kids, then getting paid to sing, dance and play games is living the dream, my friend. Though I think what's most fascinating about the experience is seeing how they deal with each other. Watching them interact tells you more about undiluted human thinking and behaviour than anything I've ever read or seen. It's like a daily version of the most adorable Shakespearean play ever, only without the murder.

Fights, to begin with, are amazing. Not physical fights, but disagreements over crayon ownership, who is whose friend and the like. These often end with a 'You're not my friend!' followed by a hopeful 'Are you my friend?' to another student not long after this. Allegiances like this are commonly formed and broken between 5-10 times daily. They normally just slip away as attention is drawn elsewhere, but treaties are often brokered with an offer of sharing or through some hilarious poo-poo related humour.

Fighting's old drinking buddy, jealousy, is rife too. If someone has something, you can be damned sure everyone else wants one. I mean, why should only they have that pen/ book/ hat right? Just another reason for fighting I suppose. So I do my best. I placate and distract, and often things are back to normality in less than five minutes. Even the very worst situations, those that involve crying, are past history in a little over ten.

The most interesting thing to me though, is the similarity to 'adult' arguments. The main difference's being that they tend to last a lot longer, and are normally only buoyed by stubbornness and a better memory. It sort of demonstrates what I've always suspected - how pointless most arguments and disagreements between friends are, at any age. Among people I have known it's a rare occasion when I ever see something good come out of an argument and it often just ends up with people who were close moving further apart.

Maybe it's an effective way to communicate for some, but I've always thought that there are better options. Actual, proper talking is a good start. And at the end of the day, most arguments aren't of any more importance than crayon ownership really. So quit arguing, you babies.

No comments:

Post a Comment