I can't believe that I am already in my third week of being a reading buddy. I went with a feeling of slight trepidation for my second session last week. Would I recognise my buddy in a sea of children's faces, would he be enthusiastic or would he really not be that bothered whether I turned up or not?
I entered the school, walked up to the classroom and was confronted by two boys who were messing about around the desks. One of them cheekily asked, "who are you?" "I'm here as a reading buddy" I answered. "Who with?" "Careem" "Well" he said pointing at his partner in crime, "that's Careem."
I have to say I was slightly confused. Really? This was the boy that I had read with last week? He didn't look quite as I had remembered, but then as we had been outside he had mostly had his hood up covering part of his face. Ah well, my memory isn't what it was. I smiled, "well, I'm really sorry I didn't recognise you, you had your hood up last time...." The boys fell about laughing and I could feel my face turning pink and glowing with embarrassment. I'd been well and truly taken for a mug. "Thank you" I said curtly. "That's really mean."
With that I could hear a cacophony of voices as the rest of the children piled up the stairs. I saw with relief their teacher heading towards me. She looked at me quizzically. "Hi, I'm here to read with Careem..." "Oh yes" she said quickly, "he's on his way up so just grab him." Great I thought, but as I looked up I saw him ferreting in his bag and pulling out a book. Thank goodness, I did recognise him after all.
I grinned as he approached with book in hand. It turned out that he had researched tube trains in Birmingham as we had discussed the previous week but understandably couldn't find any reference to an underground in that particular city. True to my word I had also looked it up and could reliably tell him that there were four underground systems in the UK; the London Undergound, London Dockland Light Railway, Tyne and Wear and Glasgow.
This time we read all about space and how astronauts shower and poo in zero gravity. What did I say before about learning something new....! We even used the school's computer to google some answers to questions that had been raised whilst reading the book and Careem showed enthusiam and enjoyment. I think tomorrow I'll be a little more relaxed and won't be taken in so easily by cheeky schoolboys!
On a more domestic front, this last week we have celebrated our little boy turning two. It seems like only yesterday that he was a tiny babe in arms, weighing hardly anything and not able to do much other than eat, sleep and poo. Now he is a tough little toddler, who runs everywhere, learns a new word everyday, grins cheekily when he knows he's about to do something wrong and weighs seemingly a ton. Okay, that is a slight exaggeration, but when I'm carrying him in our baby backpack he is heavy!
He's had a terrific few days, playing with his cousins, receiving birthday gifts and generally having a lot of time and attention lavished upon him. I'm just trying to take in every moment and really enjoy every stage he goes through. It won't be long before he's ready to leave home so I don't want to miss anything.
Time really does fly.