Kindergarteners and loose teeth

Kindergarten is not only a time for learning but also a time socializing. When kids are in the lunch room or on the playground, or even standing in line waiting to go inside, they talk about the things that are important to them. Right now, they seem to be talking about loose teeth, or they are in my grandson’s kindergarten class.

This is a big deal. It ranks right up there with who is celebrating a birthday, or whose mom is having a baby. It’s like a badge they wear that separates them from the rest of the kids in the class.

Counting loose teeth seems to have taken center stage in my grandson’s kindergarten class. It became the activity of choice after Patrick’s class went on a field trip to the dentist’s office. That was a great field trip. It allowed some of the kids who have never seen a dentist the opportunity to learn first hand that dentists are nice people, not ogres. For the other kids, it provided the opportunity for them to share with the dentist the number of teeth the class has lost so far and the number of loose teeth the children in the class have right now.

This is a big deal. Kids who don’t have loose teeth are doing their best to make their teeth loose. Kids who have loose teeth are taking every opportunity to wiggle them to the oohs and ahs of their classmates. The kindergartners who have lost teeth are the heroes of the classroom. The Tooth Fairy movie, staring Dwayne Johnson, may have added to their interest.

For over a month now Patrick has been trying to make his teeth wiggle. This has become almost an obsessive daily ritual as he tries to join the elite group of kindergartners in his class.

Recently, Patrick announced that he has some loose teeth. We were a little skeptical, but we patiently listened as he told us that his loose teeth were on the bottom. He even ate apples at every opportunity to ensure that he was telling the truth.

We tried to explain to Patrick that kids lose teeth when their body tells them it’s time. That not all kindergartners will loose teeth, but he isn’t buying it.

Last week Patrick received confirmation that he is indeed telling the truth. At his six month dental check up he learned that he has four loose teeth on the bottom, not one. When he heard the news, he had to call his mom. He even shared the news with the kids in his class.

Now he wiggles his loose teeth even more than before. He finds every opportunity he can to make them a little looser. He can hardly wait until the day he looses the first tooth. When that happens, he will be shouting the news from the roof tops.

I just hope his mom manages to save the money she’ll need the tooth fairy. I don’t think she takes I O U’s.