Here is my story:
It was a warm summer day, school was starting in just one short week, and it was time to take Ella in and register her for the new year. It all seemed harmless enough: fill out some paper work, show Ella her new class room, the standard back-to-school stuff. Then from the corner of my eye, I saw a table filled with clipboards and sign-up-sheets. I walked over, browsed the contents, and blithely scrawled my name on a few (okay maybe more than a few) different sign-ups that sounded interesting to me...
...I am now in charge of Box Tops for Ella's classroom, the room mom, and I volunteer in the class room every other week.
Oops! Apparently these sign-up-sheets are not asking you if you are interested, its more like they are asking you for a commitment.
Well I obviously got a few phone calls once the school year started, but my favorite came from Ella's teacher: Mrs. D left me a message asking me if I needed any help with the Halloween party that was coming up. I listened as she explained what was going to happen and what I needed to know. I was used to getting these phone calls by now and so I figured that I must have signed my name on the Halloween party sheet. No big deal, I like helping out and it would be fun to spend that time with Ella.
I started planning the party and called Mrs. D with a few questions, here is how our conversation went:
Mrs D: "Every school has their own culture, and so here it is a little different. Usually the room mom is assigned, but here they just have people sign up. So if you need any help with the future class parties just let me know".
Me: .......... (nervous laughter).......... "Um, wait........ what? Could you repeat that last part?" (more nervous laughter)
Mrs D: " Well you and one other mom signed up to be the room moms, and so you plan the parties."
Me: ........... (even more nervous laughter)........ " Oh, okay......um......... I did not know that is what I was signing up for, but, okay, I can make that work. Heeeeeheeeeheee".
Mrs. D was so very nice and empathetic. She told me that she did the same thing when her first started school and she also told me that we can get other moms to help out too. I was grateful for her kindness and understanding (have I mentioned what a great teacher I think she is?) and I knew that we really could make this work, but I couldn't help but laugh at myself.
The truth is, I want to be as involved as I can be in my kids classrooms. Ella loves when I am there, and I feel like I can be much more on top of things when I know the teachers, classmates, and general environment .
Plus I like planning parties and helping out where I can, so this really isn't a big deal, but next year I will be a little wiser when I come across that certain table with clipboards and sign-up-sheets!