The tooth fairy is well-known for visiting the homes of first grade children, as well as their classrooms! That’s because a lot of first graders start losing their teeth, and especially the ones in front.
I have dozens of stories about the tooth fairy, and here are just a few.
Rarely, does Martin ever get angry, but early this morning it happened - before class had even started ...
It happened whenever Amy ran into the classroom and climbed up on my stool. She spoke as if she were making an announcement to the city ...
“My first tooth come out last night!" She squealed with delight. "And I got a dollar out of it!”
Martin who’s a died-in-the-wool down-home-southern boy glared up at her. He wrinkled his forehead and flared his nostrils. “I know I jist ain’t hearing her right,” he said to me.
Ignoring him, Amy jumped down and hugged me hard.
Martin was flabbergasted. “Did you say you got a DOLLAR? Otta your TOOTH?"
Nodding proudly, Amy opened her mouth wide and pointed inside of it.
"Ain’t NO way! I ain’t NEVER heared of that before!” He shook his head and stomped away.
"Martin," I explained, "she doesn't mean that she got a dollar out of her TOOTH ... "
Gasping, then sighing, Amy interrupted me. “What? He's ain't never heard of the tooth fairy before?”
Whew! No one ever said teaching first grade would be easy! lol
Ever since Weesie lost her two front teeth, she’s had – much to her dismay – a lisp.
She was trying to tell me about her new video game whenever she was overcome with frustration.
“Forget it, Teacher,” she said. “See dat?” She pointed to two new nubs of enamel protruding from her bulging red gums. “I can’t hardly talk with deese new teef!”
The class had viewed a slide show that demonstrated how to brush teeth correctly ...
Stevie said, “That sounds just like my Granny.”
He mimicked her voice. “Brush your teeth. And when they fall out, the tooth fairy will come and see a shiny white tooth, and give you some money.”
He scratched his head reflectively. “I said, ‘Granny all you do is worry about my teeth. It’s like this ... If that tooth falls out and it’s dirty, I’ll spit on it and shine her up real fast!’ ”
“I hope she don’t worry no more,” Amy said, wistfully.
“Aw, no,” he said, “she worries, AND yells, AND STILL makes me brush my teeth!”
“Guess what? She done it again!” Ema was upset. “The tooth fairy come by my house, took my tooth and didn’t leave me no money!”
“Naw,” I said, nodding understandingly.
“That’s the troof!” she uttered in complete innocence.
I've heard her other stories about the tooth fairy before, so I reached into my desk drawer. “Well, I have something for you. Maybe this will make you feel better." I picked up a quarter and placed it in the palm of her small hand.
Instead of being happy or pleased, she simply stared at it.
Finally, feigning a smile, she said, “Teacher, don’t you 'member? The tooth fairy ... Well, she went and done me like that THREE TIMES!”
Later, Amy – who had been ecstatic all day about losing her first tooth - said, “Teacher, can I tell you something 'portant? In the hall?" She seemed so solemn now.
In the hall, Amy confessed that she had been worried about being the only one.
“What? What do you mean?"
“See … I was the only one who still had ALL MY TEETH. And I was SO embarrassed!”
“Aww,” I said, “so sorry you felt like that. But I understand."
“I know,” she said, “but I want to be like everybody else! Do you want to know how I done it?”
I was trying to follow her. “How did you do what?”
She smiled sweetly.
“See, I made me some pixie dust with my broke-up crayons. And POOF! My tooth popped out!”
I dropped my mouth in surprise, but I was thinking …
Pixie dust? Broken crayons? How creative! I thought pixie dust helped humans to fly. Ha ha! But what do I know?
My first graders know more about that kind of stuff than I do. They enjoy believing in magical things.
I must say that I’m glad Amy didn’t ask me anything about pixie dust or the tooth fairy.
If the conversation had gotten too deep, I would have to say what I always say to my kiddos ...
“Ask your parents.”
Anyway, I love first grade! Even at this young age, people want to fit in, and be like everyone else. And I understand that, too.
* * *
I wish each and every one of my firsties knew exactly how special they are! But, alas, for some - too many of them - it may take a lifetime. That's why I try my best to let them know, now!
Do you have a picture of your child or yourself with some front teeth missing? Tell us what grade you were in ... or share a story that goes with your toothless grin.
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