I Was The Mother Of Jesus: At least for 40 minutes or so
I was 4 years old when I started full-time primary school and I was way above average for my age. You see I had studied with Mrs Cooper, a retired primary school teacher before that, from about 18 months/2 years old.
At Mrs Cooper’s you didn’t do finger painting, playing in the sandpit or any of the usual nursery school stuff. At Mrs Cooper’s, you learned to read, write and studied maths. I could read a full-sized novel at the age of 4, I could write better than most children that were several years older than myself. I knew my times tables up to the 4 times table.
The thing is, I loved Mrs Cooper. I didn’t bemoan learning this stuff. We had apples, cookies and milk sitting under the big oak tree in her garden at break time. It was a full day with her, but it was far better than being at home. I wanted to be anywhere except home from the earliest age I can remember.
But the time came to leave Mrs Cooper and go to school with all the other kids. To go to school with kids that were still learning the alphabet. To say I was confused would be an understatement. Surely everyone could read and write by now? But they couldn’t.
As a result, I skipped the first year of Primary school. They realised that I was already ahead, so they put me into the next year group up. I was with all the children who were 1 or 2 years older than me. I didn’t mind, I quite enjoyed it.
Side note here, I was tiny as a kid. So not only was I by far the youngest, but I was also the smallest by quite a lot. I was actually smaller than every child in the school. I was also the youngest in the school. In those days the cut off was different, I’m not sure how they worked it, but I was the youngest until the following year.
My first year was fun. We had milk and story-time. I got to be a milk monitor when I had been there for a while. At story-time, all the kids curled up on the carpet and went to sleep. All except me. I never could fall asleep listening to a story, I wanted to know how it ended. Even if I had heard it a hundred times.
I think this frustrated my teacher a little. She enjoyed the quiet of nap time. But now she had a…