Sunday, May 7, 2017

Primary Class

Madison has the best primary teachers.  These teachers are hardcore--no snacks for the little ones and a rotating chore list.  Madison is always so excited to go to primary and see her teachers.  Sister Mattes sends emails about what happens in primary.  Here is one:

Email One:

Greetings to all the wonderful parents of our fabulous CTR-4B class!   Sis. Martell and I are loving getting to know your children and teaching them in Primary.  I believe we have settled in pretty well.
As you know, I do not believe in giving treats in class.  However, there are two exceptions to my rule: one is the Word of Wisdom lesson in the current red manual.  (The other is the lesson about Jesus as a child and what He might have eaten, which is in the green manual.)  
I love to teach the Word of Wisdom lesson!  I provide a little bit of favorite vegetables and favorite fruits to reinforce the idea of healthy eating.  I promise not to ruin their lunch appetites, but I know they were really bummed when I told them during our first class that there would not be treats each week. And I am equally sure that whatever I give them will not be enough because I hear each week that they are hungry towards the end of our lesson.  I always answer, “me too, and we are going home in a little while to have lunch.”
In reviewing the survey that you all filled out for me, I noticed that strawberries and carrots are front-runners in popularity.    This is the breakdown according to the survey:
Mikey – banana, apple, broccoli
Carmen – strawberries, pineapple, carrots
Ani – strawberries, celery
Edwin – strawberries, salad

Madison – strawberries, carrots
I want each child to have something they like, and will make individual Ziploc baggies with their personal favorites.  I would appreciate if you would let me know if your child's favorite vegetable and favorite fruit have changed.  Also if strawberries and carrots won’t work for them, I would like to know that, too.   

Please let me know if you have any concerns.  Thanks so much! 

Email Two:

I love teaching your children! During Sharing Time today our class visited with Bishop and Sister Clover in the Bishop’s office.  The children did not know ahead of time that we were doing so, and they were so reverent and respectful.  Sis. Martell made a card for the Bishop with pictures of the children which the Bishop loved!  Sis. Clover asked first and then gave each child a hug and a CTR emblem, and we left with a handshake from the Bishop.  It was a good visit.  Our Primary Presidency has been inspired to have each class visit with the Bishop for a few minutes so that the children will recognize him and vice-versa! 

Wow, now on to our lesson for the day – the Word of Wisdom.  Not sure if your child shared the lesson with you and or if you wondered just what we talked about!  I can honestly say that this has been the first lesson that was received with such great exuberance and excitement which, of course, translated into loud voices, talking over each other, and Sis. Mattes using her teacher voice a few times to try to gain control, which I don’t think I accomplished!!  I had told them that I hoped we could get through the entire lesson so they could see what was in my tote bag – I know, bribery or as I like to think of it – incentive. 

I introduced the Word of Wisdom and asked them to remember that it is a commandment that Jesus gave to the prophet Joseph Smith.  I mostly focused on and we talked about the importance of eating good food that is healthy for our bodies that allows us to play basketball, play Frisbee (Madison); play soccer, do cartwheels and play on the monkey bars (Ani); run, swim on swim team, and play with toys (Edwin); and swim, draw, and write (Carmen).

I mentioned their favorite foods (the activities and faves came from the surveys that you filled out), and I emphasized the importance of obeying the rules that their parents have regarding food for their family. Someone mentioned allergies – they are very aware of peanut allergy I guess from their preschools – and one young lady mentioned that she has an allergy because she doesn’t like something.  I explained that it’s okay not to like certain foods, but it is different if you have an allergy to a food that will make you sick.  I said my family rule was that my children were encouraged to at least taste something before they could say they didn’t like it. Lots of stories and experiences shared today! 

I had pictures of fruits, vegetables, peanut butter & jelly sandwich, nuts, hamburgers, poultry, fish, dairy, etc., that we discussed and found out who liked what and whether they agreed these foods were good choices.  We also talked about the things that Jesus told us are not good for our bodies – coffee, tea, alcohol, cigarettes – you will be happy to know that none of our CTR-4’s drink coffee or smoke, and they were so serious when they told me.  So cute!  Tea was mentioned and is on the coloring handout I gave – we talked about herbal tea which one family drinks which not everyone knew about and they may ask you about.  On the handout was a picture of a needle and the word drugs.  I explained the difference between medicines that the doctor or parents may give that are needed for good health and the bad kind of drugs that hurt our bodies without going into detail.  I need to re-think that handout for this age group although I have used it with older children for years.

We talked about candy – yum, all the goodies such as cake, ice cream, chocolate, cookies, and chips.  When I asked if it would be good to just eat these things – they agreed no, but looked rather sad.  We did thumbs up for a little candy, and thumbs down for too much candy.  Once again parents’ rules were emphasized.

Finally, we made it through the lesson, and it was time for my tote bag.  I had strawberries, carrot sticks, and apple slices in baggies.  I do not bring snacks as I mentioned before except for this lesson and one other.  They were excited to see the snacks, but I think they wanted to see everything being offered before committing.  So funny!  The carrot sticks did not go over very well – maybe they are used to baby carrots?  Strawberries and apple slices were a hit.  I had packages of apple slices without the skins.  And as I knew would happen, everyone wanted more!  The best part: one of the children asked while they were eating the snacks, so when do we see what’s in your tote bag?  Hmm, burst my bubble!  And very humbling!

This lesson was so much fun, and I love to share the good times.  I wish you could have been “flies on the wall” to hear some of their comments.  I hope you read and accept this novelette with the humor and spirit that I intend!    I love teaching your children!

A follow up email:

Thank you so much.  Bishop Clover asked Madison if she was Maddie, and she let him know that no, she is Madison!  Also just so you know - Madison was the one who asked "so when do we see what's in your tote bag" as she munched on the apples!  So innocent!  Loved it!!  And her!