The 'Annie' Problem…


So, something happened yesterday and I am sort of at a loss with how to deal.

We're thinking about starting Rose at a 3-year-old kindergarten in September, and we haven't done daycare or anything yet because she was very uncomfortable any time we returned to the Care Center in Ethiopia or have been in any kind of a children's group with a lot of unknown kids and adults since then.

I pretty much work more than full-time, though (part of the time in the house, after the kids are in bed) and a friend watches Rose when I'm at the office.

So I've been thinking that I should try to introduce her to some kind of playgroup or classroom, and I found the perfect thing in our local Rec. Department Directory- a singing and dancing class for 3-6 year olds, so both my kids can go. It's perfect, because Rose tethers to her Dillon, and she is totally comfortable any place he is, but this is the first thing I've seen that they could both attend. They're champion singers & dancers as well, so that works out great too…

She's a little uncomfortable yesterday for the first class at drop-off, but I leave my jacket and bag in the room with them, and sit in the hallway with a book where she can see that I haven't left, and within a few minutes she is totally cool, and when they move to a different part of the room where she can't see me, that is fine with her. I can't emphasize enough how big of a deal this is, because she still cries sometimes when I leave in the mornings and she's with someone she's known almost six months.

It's also important to note here as well that I haven't told any of the teachers in the room that Rose is adopted.  I think when you look at Rose and D together, it is not out of the realm of possibility that they are related by blood or whatever.

At the end of the hour-long class, the kids come out, loving the class and can't wait to go back next week, and we go home. When I open the folder that they were given, I find that they are working on a 'show' where they will learn to sing and dance to four songs, and each kid that has volunteered has been given a 'solo' part. Now, if you read the title of this post, I think you can guess what happens next. Of course, one of the songs is 'Hard Knock Life' from 'Annie'.

Full disclosure here: I was obsessed with this musical, as well as 'Oliver!' and 'Sound of Music' as a little girl, and I can remember sitting in front of the record player and making my parents put them on over and over, I can STILL sing every part to every song twenty-some years later. So I can totally see why they chose this musical, with its strong and appealing girl characters (and the class only had about two boys in it), etc…

But of course, I don't expect that MY little girl will have volunteered for a solo (I expect that she just raised her hand when her brother did) OR that the line she would have been given out of the four songs that are being performed is "Got no folks to speak of, so…"

Now, I am not normally oversensitive about stuff (unless you ask Charles), and my initial feeling is that being on the stage is a game of pretend, just like the kids singing solos in 'Beauty and the Beast' or 'Bare Necessities' so I shouldn't make a big deal about it, but just tell the teacher that both my kids will sing the part as a duet, and leave it at that.

But I'm wondering if, looking at the video that I will most likely take of their performance, Rose will someday feel bad about that decision…  


2 Responses to “The 'Annie' Problem…”

  1. pattio says:

    Congrats on getting Rose into a group class!
    Sounds like you are doing all the right things Molly. Rose will probably only remember the fun time she had in her singing and dancing class with her big brother. Having D w/her makes all the difference and having you nearby is perfect.

    My feeling as a music educator about that particular piece for 3-6 yr olds is that it is musically inappropriate – hopefully they are doing some of the easier songs. Still, I’m sure R & D will be totally sweet.

  2. pattio again says:

    Sorry. I read it wrong. Only one song from Annie. That’s cool. I thought all 4 songs were from Annie. Can’t wait to see the video!

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