School

At age five I started school
I could already read and write
The teacher complained to my mother

The only free chair in the classroom
was next to John on the boys table.
He looked after me always. I taught him to read.

I remember happy days
camaraderie with the boys
punctuated by sly kicks from the girls.

Ever observant
I drew the moon in the morning sky.
My teacher called me stupid.

At age eleven, a new school
called me intelligent, poorly taught.
I left John and the boys behind.

Copyright © 2021 Kim Whysall-Hammond

11 thoughts on “School

  1. Like all of us, my youngest sister could read before she started infants’ school at five. This was in the 70s, when the Initial Teaching Alphabet was newly fashionable in the UK. My sister was told to forget all she’d learnt from Mum and learn the ‘new way’ of reading. She became, if not bilingual, at least biliterate. At seven, on progressing to junior school, her class was gradually introduced to the real alphabet. Happily, she had no problem with that – she was reading newspapers at home by then!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Sounds like you were the instructor, John learned, the teacher did not. I remember the day I came home saying tree trunks were brown because of a school coloring exercise. My dad was furious. He took me outside to look at tree bark. It was gray, black, a bit of brown and even a little green. I looked at it and said, tree trunks are brown. But what about what you see in front of you? he asked. But, teacher said, was my reply! That really got him…

    Liked by 1 person

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