Reid had her Christmas pageant on December 18th. Ken and I were both able to attend, which is a very nice thing. We arrived early enough to get seats in the front row on the gym.
Reid’s teachers sang a version of the Twelve Days of Christmas at the beginning of the performance – I don’t know why they sang first, given that kids aren’t known for their patience but they did and the kids loved what they sang:
On the twelfth day of Christmas, my students gave to me, twelve teachers fussing, eleven students jumping, ten runny noses, nine children running, eight tots a-tumbling, seven kids a-swimming, six shoes to tie, five more grey hairs, four crying tots, three funny faces, two dirty diapers and a smile from ear-to-ear.
Every time the teacher sang, “two dirty diapers” the Junior and Senior Kindergarten kids giggled. Who better to understand kids’ potty humour than their teachers, eh?
After the teachers had finished, the toddlers came forward. They were wearing angels’ wings made from white paper with glitter glue on them and halos. Many of those select number who made it to the front were crying, most of the others looked scared. Their teachers led them through an unintentionally ironic rendition of “If You’re Happy and You Know It” as most of the kids cried while the teachers sang. The English and French Preschool classes each sang a couple songs and then it was time for the main (in my opinion) attraction – the Senior Kindergarten play.
Reid’s teacher was more nervous than the kids were, I think. She hadn’t been in charge of a play before whereas the kids were confident in themselves and their practicing. The kids all knew their lines and spoke clearly but the noise from the other classes made it difficult to hear them. The plot was simple – one of the girls had forgotten to mail her letter to Santa and when her sister discovered it, she woke her up to ask what to do and then they woke up a brother and then the three woke a fourth and so on until a whole crowd went to wake up the parents. The dad told them to call 1-800-Père-Noël, which they did. Maman Noël (played brilliantly by Reid) answered the call, “Maison de Père Noël” and told them not to worry, “Père Noël a des cadeaux pour tous les amis.” Reid’s teacher gave each of the students a rose after their bows and then the Junior Kindergarten kids joined the Senior Kindergarten kids at the front and they all sang “Jingle Bells” and “Vive le vent” (the French words that correspond to the same tune).
Santa arrived and had candy canes and a few words for each child. Reid, being Reid and thus the teacher’s pet, went up with Natalie at her side. After Reid had her turn with Santa, we went to the JK/SK classroom for cookies and juice. The kids were hyped on the excitement of the concert and didn’t really need the extra sugar but I have to confess that I liked the cookies with sprinkles.
All in all, the pageant was a success. Reid was proud of herself for speaking clearly and loudly. Ken and I were pleased that it hadn’t been the sort of event that is funny when you tell people about it later but not so much when it’s happening. It’s all about managing expectations and claiming small victories.