Wednesday, June 1, 2016

“Something will have to be done,” said Miss Nelson.


My mom is amazing. I already know it, but everyone tells me anyway. Someone my mom works with even told me last week when I went to work with her for a couple of days.

"Your mom is amazing," she said.

"I know it," I responded with a smile.

My mom has worked at Gan Shalom preschool for about a year and a half now. She was recruited by one of her old directors who is now a director at Gan Shalom, and Mom is now the preschool teacher for three- to four-year-olds.

Gan Shalom is the preschool for the Jewish Federation of Greater Des Moines, which means that it's a Jewish preschool. They learn some Hebrew and practice some Jewish traditions. We are not Jewish, but that didn't stop Mom from taking on the new challenge.

Since starting at Gan Shalom, Mom has come home with stories and information and fun facts about these Jewish practices she experiences at work. One of her favorites is Shabbat, which happens every Friday. The little boys wear Kipas, and the little girls wear head scarves. All of the kids sing songs, put pennies in the pushka, drink grape juice, and eat challah.

Mom is always telling me I should come some Friday for Shabbat, and I just haven't had the chance to go. After moving home for the summer, I had about two weeks to kill before I started nannying, so last week I decided to go to work with Mom for a couple of days. I went on Tuesday and Friday, which means I got to experience Shabbat, and it was so, so cool. {Am I too old for a "Bring Your Kid to Work" type of situation?}

While it was fun and interesting to experience a little bit of the Jewish culture, it was also really cool to see my mom in action. I've seen her teach a little bit, but I've never actually just sat in the classroom with her all day. It really is true: my mom is amazing.

At work I knew Mom was called Morah Lisa {morah is Hebrew for teacher}, which I've always thought was adorable, but it was so cute to see all of the kids call her Morah Lisa and talk to her and show off for her. Plus all of the kids were just super cute in general, of course. They were very welcoming to me and immediately let me join in on their games and activities. They even asked me to read them a story to them at story time! Plus I got to play with them on the playground and eat lunch and snack with them and help put them all down for nap.

When I was younger, I always thought I wanted to be a kindergarten or first grade teacher but eventually realized it might not be for me, so when I visited Gan Shalom, my inner child was just singing. It was so fun to be looked at as a teacher and as someone older who still gets to be friends with the little kids. I still think it would be fun to do something like that for a living, but I'm happy with the choice I've made. Plus my mom is so amazing at what she does that I don't think I could do it nearly as well as her. I'll just stick with visiting her at work :)

At home my mom is amazing, but it was still something special to see her work. With her kids, she is so gentle and kind and patient and funny and inspiring. Plus she's just a really great teacher, of course. I could tell that the kids just love her, worship her even, and it was so special for me to get to experience that with her.

If I ever have a slow day nannying this summer, I plan on making my way to Gan Shalom to help mom out a little more. I wish I could go to work with her every day!

Mom, coming to work with you just reaffirmed what I already knew {and what your coworkers told me}: you are amazing.

What did you want to be when you grew up? Is that the same thing you want to be now or already are? Have you ever visited your parents at work? Was it amazing? I'm coming to a construction site with you next, Dad! Shalom!

Lots of love,

Harry Allard and James Marshall, "Miss Nelson is Missing!"