In the craziness that has been today–and that’s with only six kids. Tomorrow brings seven!–I am reminded of a time that was much crazier, wilder, and yet one of the funniest moments I’ve ever experienced in child care.
For those of you who don’t know state laws, legally I can only have seven toddlers by myself, which means ratio is 1:7. However, with two teachers, fourteen toddlers are allowed to grace us with their presence. FOURTEEN. (I’d like to question the sanity of whatever state employee made up this nonsense–have they ever worked at a daycare?!) So on the first day that the two toddler rooms were combined into one large toddler room–the reason of which I will touch on tomorrow in a post about potty training–it was a tad bit, well, zoo-like. I had come in at noon when the children were supposed to be in sleep mode, but what I walked in on was quite the opposite. These kids were so hyped up by being in one large room that NO ONE was going to sleep. Maybe one or two angels were asleep, but that left twelve other knee-highers to jump on their cots and run rampant around the room. I was worried.
State law: Ratio drops when all children are on their cots at nap–1:14. That’s right. I could be left alone with fourteen children.
So there I was. All alone with fourteen–okay maybe twelve–kids who were acting as if they’d all taken a shot of straight caffeine. I was about to pull my hair out. The one teacher who offered to stay to help me get them down left after a half hour–she did not do any good. She basically said, “See ya!” and booked it out of there as toddlers screamed their goodbye’s. I was close to tears.
While I’m chasing down kids and laying them back down on their cots, others are jumping up and running around, laughing hysterically. I didn’t get the joke. I was sweaty and not happy that I had been abandoned. Honestly, I was stark, raving mad. As I was chasing one particularly ornery kid, I turned around to see a sight that instantly melted my frustration.
There, in the midst of all the cots and wild tots, stood little G–one of my favorite little girls–stark naked with a look of pure satisfaction on her face.
I could not help but laugh, but then I quickly put clothes back on her. To this day I can’t help but think that she did that on purpose. She saw her teacher going nuts trying to contain her friends and decided to help out by making me laugh. And now, thanks to G, I have a great memory–and some ammo to embarrass her with when she gets older.
Kids notice everything, but I remember everything. 😉