Oster was invited to speak in two Child Development high school classes earlier in the week. His first speaking engagement! Not to worry, I had his note cards prepared, his laundry pressed, and his PowerPoint presentation checked for accuracy! Well, actually, he attended the classes solely for the entertainment; meaning the students were doing the entertaining and I was the one speaking.
We were asked to come in to talk about Oster’s developmental experience. For the past 3 months, these students have studied child development from age birth to adolescence. In April and May, the teacher invites parents/infants/toddlers to speak to her students so that the high school-ers can relate their continued learning to real life situations.
As I spoke, Oster was being taken care of by 5 students in the classroom that were assigned to him. During the conversation, I fed Oster a spinach and apple mixture, changed his diaper (only once), and changed his clothes (he poured water on himself). He also ate half of a banana, played with the students, and interacted with them with his babbles.
This Child Development class was so impressive to witness. Each class was 52 minutes long and both flew by. The teacher was well-prepared for her little visitor. The room was baby-friendly. The student desks were to one side of the room and a play area was set up on the other side. There were table/chairs, a beautiful alphabet rug, a rocker, and many toys and balls.
I stood in the front of the classroom close enough to take care of Oster if need be. The students were so gentle with him. The questions the students asked were thought provoking and inquisitive. All were respectful and engaged in the conversation. There were a lot of follow up questions too. They observed Oster throughout the entire class period and took notes on his behavior. They really experienced a hands-on interaction with mom/baby during this time.
What a great experience for us and the students. How I wish I had had an opportunity to take a class like this when I was in high school (so long ago). You can see how interested the students were as they used their background knowledge from class to engage in conversation. Thank you Mrs. P and students for such a great experience!