Before I Started Kindergarten

Before I started kindergarten I thought I was big.
Daddy said I was his big girl.
Mama said I was Andy's big sister,
And I was finally big enough to brush my teeth
All by myself.

But on the first day of school,
everyone was bigger than I was.
The big fourth graders walked by my room
just like a big long train.
I felt like a little ant.
At recess, I heard a teacher say,
"Let the little children play on the little slide."
She looked straight at me!

Before I started kindergarten I thought I was an artist.
I drew beautiful squiggly, wiggly
Rainbows on my mom's newspaper.
I colored a man with a red and purple face;
He looked just like he ran through the rainbow.
I even made a really neat, giant chalk dinosaur
On the front sidewalk.

But, when I got to school, my teacher just didn't understand.
She said that rainbows were supposed to be like a giant curve,
Not little colorful squiggles.
Then she said that a man should be colored like real skin,
Not like a rainbow.
She didn't know my story.
But when my teacher said that I couldn't draw a dinosaur on the sidewalk,
I was very sad.
Who will get to see him,
If he's on just a little paper?

But, now I know that I'm just the right size for school.
My teacher let me make a whole book
About dinosaurs and rainbows,
And I'm learning the best thing of all.
I'm learning how to read.

September, 2000

E-mail Diana Jenness

Diana Jenness Verbeth and Nate