This is a piece for the Red Dress Club’s memoir writing prompt. This week we were asked to remember kindergarten. Mine your memories and write about the earliest grade you can recall. What was special? What was ordinary? What did you feel? Hear? See? Smell?
The Last Day
My brother tries to wake me up, “Hey Sticky, get up! You have to get dressed for school.”
It isn’t easy for me to get up in the mornings. I snuggle down into my green and white gingham bedspread. Now Dad comes in to get me up, “Come on, my little chickadee,” he says. “You don’t want to be late for your last day of kindergarten.”
Now I get up. My last day of taking the bus to school—it isn’t a regular bus. It’s a big brown station wagon with wooden paneling on the sides and a yellow and black sign that says school bus. Sometimes the man who drives it takes us through the car wash on the ride home. I’m going to miss that. Dad washes his car in the driveway.
I won’t miss being on the bus with Lisa though. She’s mean to me and says I wear boy’s clothes because my sweater is navy blue—not pink like hers. Lisa reminds me of Nellie Olsen from Little House on the Prairie. She is tall and pretty with blond ringlets and she isn’t very nice. Lisa isn’t going to the John F. Kennedy Elementary School next year and I won’t miss her one bit.
I can’t wait to be in first grade. I’m going to walk to school every day with my brothers. I’m already a really good reader. Someday I’m going to be able to read big books like my sister Katie. She doesn’t go to the Kennedy. Katie goes to West Junior High and takes books out of the library that have hundreds of pages and no pictures.
I get out of bed and get dressed. I don’t need to wear my sweater because it’s summer time now. We are leaving for vacation right after school today. I’ve never been away before. Nana and Papa live near the beach so usually we see go there during the summer. My parents saved up all their money for this thing called a motor home. It’s a cross between a house and a car. We’re going to see the whole country this summer.
My brothers tell me they don’t have snack time or naptime in elementary school—just lunch in a big cafeteria. I don’t mind not having naps. I don’t usually sleep. I just lie on my cot and look around the room. I really like snack time in kindergarten though. Sometimes we get saltines with peanut butter. It’s the best kind of peanut butter. My mom buys the all-natural stuff with the teddy bear on the jar. It’s okay if you have lots of jelly! But if you’re having straight peanut butter on crackers you can’t beat the kind they serve in kindergarten. It’s smoother and sweeter and doesn’t stick to the roof of your mouth as much. Don’t tell Mom, but I like it better.
I eat my English muffin and drink my juice. The fruit my mom made for our last day of school party is in the refrigerator. She carved a basket out of a whole watermelon and filled it with strawberries and pineapple and melon balls. Most of the other moms will probably bring cookies. I love strawberries—but I like cookies even more.
The last day iss really fun. We play games all day and there are lots of cookies. At the end of the day, my teacher gives me a hug and tells me she will miss me. She gave me a big white bear with a green bow. And guess what? He’s going on vacation with me! My parents pick me up from kindergarten in the motor home. I’m going to have two adventures. First, I’m going to see the entire country and then I’m going to go to start first grade. I wonder what will happen next!