Monday, September 10, 2007

First Day of School

Caption: Mrs. Fischer delivers her pupils, including Theo, to their parents each day at 2:48 p.m.

Theodore woke up early and dressed himself in his new back-to-school outfit, a bold-striped shirt that was a few sizes too big, dark socks and utility shorts. A lot of kids are familiar with day care and mini-camps, baby sitters -- but Theo hasn’t had any of that extracurricular stuff. He’s been home schooled since birth.

In other words: Sept. 10 was a really big day for the Clarks of New Jersey!

I’ll end the suspense here. Theo had a great day. His teacher, Mrs. Fischer, handled the children wonderfully. Theo was very shy to her at first, but when we left him standing against the wall and waiting for the other children to arrive, he was smiling. And when we picked him up, he was strutting like a peacock.

He didn’t say much about school at first, but after dinner, he began to describe all the events in chronological order from 12:12 p.m. to 2:48 p.m. The stories, the trips up and down the stairs, the group visit to the nurse.

Among other things, he was introduced to the euphemisms of inter-departmental mail. “We put paper in the teacher’s mailbox. It was just a basket, but they called it a mailbox,” he explained.

Sept. 10 was the first day of what will be years of state-sponsored learning, testing, and indoctrinating for the sensitive little fellow. Pleasant experiences in the early grades are crucial to a gallant run through the system. So Mom and Dad are thrilled that Theo’s formal education got off to such a good start.

“I wish I could go to school in the morning, afternoon, and after afternoon.” he said. “I really want to stay there for a very long time.”

He really said that. (All quotes and statements that appear in CNJ are guaranteed accurate.)

At 6:15 p.m., Theo was still wearing his nametag, written in his own hand. He's in dreamland now, but his parents are too excited to sleep.