And we’re back with Kindy Conversations, Part 2! Those crazy kindy kids…
Kindy Conversation #3
This is Lesa again. If you don’t remember her, please see Kindy Conversations, Part 1. She’s the one whose baby is named Baby, duh….
I enter the kindy room while the kindy kids are playing and sit down on the floor. Lesa runs up and sits down next to me.
Lesa: Where is your baby?
Lesa: Where is your baby?
Me: What baby? I don’t have a baby.
Lesa: Is your baby in your stomach? (as she reaches over to touch my stomach)
Me: (bewildered and totally appalled at the idea of someone thinking I’m pregnant) What?! No! I don’ t have a baby!!
The kindy teacher then laughed and explained to me that Lesa’s mom is pregnant so she probably just thought that if her mom is having a baby I must be too, naturally…. Somewhat terrifying, to be completely honest.
Kindy Conversation #4
This conversation takes place with ‘Eliesa. ‘Eli is a 4 year old boy in the kindy class. I’m a little confused as to his life… I’m pretty sure he’s Tongan, but he has a Fijian nanny/family member/someone who takes care of him, I think… he might be part Fijian. I don’t really know. But there is some Fijian influence in his life. This means that he knows random English words, random Fijian words, and some slang in both languages on top of Tongan. It can get a little bit confusing when he mixes all of it together. But this time it was just funny.
After short recess in the morning, students brush their teeth. There are always a few students who don’t have their toothbrushes, including some kindy kids. The kindy kids play in the sand during short break. As I was walking back to the library, after all the students had returned to their classes, I found ‘Eli and a couple other kindy boys still playing in the sand. Because of how this conversation went, I’m going to write it in Tongan and translate it in parentheses after (sorry, I’m not including some of the correct accents, too lazy. Also, my Tongan spelling sucks…).
Me: Ko e ha me’a oku mou fai? Foki ki api’ako! Osi taimi malolo! (What are you doing? Go back to the classroom! Break is over!)
Boys: Look innocently up at me and then keep playing.
Me: ‘Alu ki he holo! Vave, taimini! (Go to the hall! Hurry, now!)
‘Eli: (continues playing calmly while he talks to me) ‘Oku ou va’inga. Ikai fufulu hoku nifo. Hala…hala… (I am playing. Didn’t brush my teeth. I don’t have a…I don’t have a…..)
Me: Osi taimi fufulu nifo. ‘Alu ki he holo! (Toothbrushing time is over. Go to the hall!)
‘Eli: (Looks earnestly up at me.) Hala…hala…hala…. toothbrush! (I don’t have a….I don’t have a…. I don’t have a…. toothbrush!)
Me: (briefly silent as I process the fact that he said toothbrush in English, then starting to laugh) Sai pe ia… ‘Alu ki he holo! (It’s okay! Go to the hall!)
I found this one really funny because I wasn’t sure if he couldn’t think of the word for toothbrush in Tongan (polosi) and so used English, or if he was trying to think of it in English so that I would understand what he was saying. Either way I was completely caught off guard because I was not expecting him to say toothbrush. I didn’t even know he knew the word for toothbrush.
Kindy Conversation #5
This conversation takes place on a regular basis with the same student, Tina. She’s super tiny and super adorable and somewhat loud. She really likes to shake my hand, as lots of the little kids do because that’s what they learn to do when they are learning to introduce themselves. So this conversation with Tina could happen anywhere at school, any time.
I’m walking down the path to a class. Tina runs up to me. This is entirely in English
Tina: Katalina! (sticks out her hand to shake mine)
Me: Hello, Tina!
Tina: (as she shakes me hand, she recites what she understands as the proper words to go with it.) HellohowareyouI’mfinethankyouhowareYOU?!
Me: I’m great, Tina, thank you! Go to class now.
This happens like, every day. She’s actually gotten a lot better about it and sometimes stops after the “Hello, how are YOU!?” so that I can actually answer. But then once I do she still responds with “I’mfinethankyouhowareYOU?!” no matter which way she does it the you is always really loud and excited. It’s pretty cute and I have a hard time correcting her because I don’t want to crush her enthusiasm; you can always tell how proud she is that she knows what to say to me.
More Kindy Conversations to come later!