On Mondays and Wednesdays I have after school duty. After school duty is kind of my personal hell. I stand by the back gate and make sure that children are being picked up by responsible adults. This is much harder than it sounds because a) many of our parents in no way resemble responsible adults b) kids are not on their best behavior at 3 pm and c) I am responsible for telling parents that they can not park by the school while they wait for their children (this does not go over well as you can imagine).
Even though after school duty can be a little stressful, there are a few perks and one of them is K. K is a third grade girl who reminds me of an owl. She has big eyes and is very wise for her years. She is usually the last child to be picked up so I get a chance to talk to her everyday. Last Friday I curiously asked her what she asked Santa for this Christmas. She told me everything on her wishlist (much cooler things than the dolls and Barbies I wanted in 3rd grade) and then paused thoughtfully. Finally, she looked up at me and said apologetically, "Miss Gibbs, I don't really believe in Santa Claus. I found out he wasn't real a LONG time ago." I didn't know if it was some kind of test, so I didn't actually agree with her. Instead, I rambled about how Christmas is a magical time and Santa COULD exist if you really believed. She looked at me with this look of sympathy like, "Oh, you poor thing" and just shook her head. My Cool Score has clearly dropped in her book.