I thought that I was never really good with small children, and even now ,when I have my own collection, I mainly respond to the words .....putor Grandma?
I was once asked if I would take a class of twelve 5 year olds for the Summer term as they begun their School Life. I was trained to teach Junior/Secondary age children and have always enjoyed being with the 9-13yr range. I took the job at St Martins however, knowing that it was only for 1 term, and I knew the school well , sitting on Chalk Grassland on the North Downs. BUT it was one of the happiest times I ever had .The weather was beautiful, the school had lovely grounds, the head gave me Carte Blanche with the curriculum. And I had Ellie , a wonderful LSA to keep me on the straight and narrow.
We spend many afternoons wandering around the nearby allotments learning about seeds and vegetables, walking the Old Coach road looking at 6 Spot Burnet moths, and sitting under trees on the field reading stories, Danny Fox by David Thomson was our favourite.
So 20 years later I just can't pass any Greater Bindweed (Calystegia sepium) in the hedgerow without remembering that group of boys and girls. How many of them ,as parents of small children, are now popping the blooms from their stems and saying as we used to
'Grandma , Grandma , Pop out of bed!'