This rooster lives inside my sketchbook. Yes, I know it is p-i-n-k. It was inspired by a conversation in K4 in January of this year. K4 is the easy way to say, "Pre-Kindergarten for four year olds". I am A Sometimes Substitute Teacher there, in the Second Banana Aide Position, which suites me just fine. On this particular day, we were learning about letter 'R' and doing special activities to reinforce the sound it makes, with words that begin with R, like rooster. The children were coloring in a picture of a rooster's head and feet. Once those pieces were colored, cut and glued down to another piece of paper, the finishing touches were made using the children's hand prints. This flock of roosters turned out quite nicely too.
It was during The Coloring Time, after being instructed to color their rooster brown, black or red, that one child asked, "What about pink?" Without missing a beat, the other teacher (The Experienced One), replied, "I've never seen a pink rooster before." It was meant to encourage "normal", natural colors be used for the project, and it made me want to draw one. A Pink One, that is. So I did. As you can see here.
The children's book, "The Artist Who Painted A Blue Horse", by Eric Carle reminded me of my pink rooster today. It also reminded me of my recent comments in, "the sky is wakin' up", from August 27, 2011. Here are those comments, in a post of their own, illustrated by the pink rooster that I drew for Jane. So she could see one. Because as my Grandma would have said, "I'm ornery like that."
Four year olds need to wiggle and play, and learn by touch and doing. They are so fun! Creative free spirits unfettered by the Suppose To's and Have To's of Life. They still say it how they think it and can be quite profound in their youthful honesty.
I secretly root for the children who color green people and pink roosters. They are My People. I have always been a scribbler. Just ask my mother. She'll tell you how bad at coloring I was and that my teacher was quite concerned. Lucky for me, my mother wasn't. She knew big blank paper was better for my imagination than a coloring book page ever would be.
Years later, my mother found herself teaching in a kindergarten classroom. Lucky children who had her for their teacher. She went back to teaching full time after my brother, sister and I were in school full time. My father taught high school for over 30 years. His mother, my grandmother, was a teacher too.
I love answering their questions and seeing the world through their eyes. Their eyes truly do sparkle and their four year old impishness comes though. They make me laugh.
I do remember what it is like to be a child. Especially at those awkward ages. So many of them, including the one I am now some days.
I am still curious. My children are too. If I don't know the answer I say so and add, "We can google it" or "we can go the library and research it further." I cannot wait to see what my boys will be when they grow up. But wait I will. Because I don't want to rush the magic of childhood away to the grown up world that waits. They will arrive there soon enough.
I bought a book today
the sky is wakin' up
When Art Calls You Home (Part 1)
© 2011 Janean Baird, Turquoise Tangles