Age 10 5th Grade: Nothing’s Scary in the Fifth Grade

This is the 7th post in a 12 week series joining
Mommy’s Piggy Tales to record my youth!

1989-1990
5th Grade
Nothing’s Scary in the 5th Grade

Before I move on to my story, let us first discuss the awesomeness that is my sweater. You truly can not appreciate the awesomeness in its entirety because you can’t see the whole sweater. Let me paint a picture for you, if I may. On the body portion of the sweater is the head of a giraffe. The blue fringe that you see in the photo is the giraffe’s fur on its head and neck which goes down the whole left sleeve of the sweater, making it appear as though your arm is the extension of the giraffe’s neck and its neck is bent over on to the sweater. It doesn’t getting any cooler than that! I do not intend to throw my extreme coolness in your face and I apologize if you are jealous because your childhood sweaters were not as rad as mine were. I’ll give you a moment to compose yourself.

In 1989 I started the 5th Grade. That meant Middle School (Junior High for some of you). Everything was about to change. I was going to a new building that was unfamiliar and much bigger than the elementary school. I mean, it had a separate cafeteria, gymnasium, and auditorium! No more cafegymatorium? We’re talking big time here, people! The big unfamiliar building wasn’t the only thing that terrified me. How about lockers…with combinations?! Not bad enough? How about having class periods, changing classes throughout the day (which also meant having many teachers instead of just one!)? Let me tell you, it was enough to give a 10-year-old girl afraid of change a nervous break down.

When the first day of school came I was too scared to go to my Homeroom. I begged my mom to take me. She came inside of the school with me and waited with me in the hall until the bell rang and then she walked me upstairs to my class. She told me that I was too old for this, but I didn’t care! (I tried to have her do the same thing my first day of high school, but she refused! Admittedly I wasn’t near as frightened about that transition as this one.). I was worried that I wouldn’t be able to get into my locker, or that I’d forget the combination, or that I’d get lost going to one of my classes, or that I’d get my schedule mixed up and go to the wrong place at the wrong time, or that I’d get to class but brought the wrong book.

My fears were not completely unfounded. I did have some trouble with my locker. I ended up carrying around all of my books with me everywhere for the first week of school. It was not easy carrying around all of those books because I was so tiny. I also had trouble finding my way around. On the first day I couldn’t find the gym. I asked several people, who explained it to me…but I still couldn’t find it. I was just wandering around the halls alone crying. Eventually, somehow, I managed to find the gym. Thankfully my teacher was nice and understanding about why I was late, although I assume it’s pretty tough to yell at a tiny 10-year-old girl carrying her own weight in books crying hysterically about how she couldn’t find the gym.

Even though I wasn’t entirely wrong about how scary Middle School was I certainly overreacted to the change. Just like many before me and many after me, I eventually worked out my issues with my locker, learned my way around, memorized my schedule and kept a copy of it in my Trapper Keeper just in case. Middle School wasn’t so bad after that.

1989-1990 5th Grade Gym Class

Girl-y Talk

At one point during the school year all of the 5th grade girls were called to the auditorium. The school nurse showed us a video. I don’t remember too much about it except that it looked like it was made in the 70s, was set in a camp by a lake, and involved girls wearing knee socks. What any of that had to do with teaching us about getting our periods…I’ll never know. But that’s what this was about. No we didn’t talk about it, that would come a few years later. The nurse told us all what to expect and that it would happen to all of us in the next few years. Then she gave each of us a kit. It was a flimsy cardboard box which I seem to remember being peach in color with little white flowers (dots? stars?) on it. Inside were a few different pads (sanitary napkins) of different thickness, some pamphlets, and a sleeve that you could slip a spare pad inside of to keep in your purse. When I got home from school that day I took my special box and slid it underneath my bed.

And now I leave you with this little treasure that was inside the box…

…and it unfolds!

You are welcome 😉

You can read about my 10th birthday here:
Jenn’s 10th Birthday Party 1989

My Piggy Tales:
*My Birth Story: I’m always late!
*Ages 3-5: Dancing in a box
*Age 6 First Grade: There’s a bra in my lunchbox!
*Age 7 Second Grade: Bossy Wheels and Shady Deals
*Age 8 Third Grade: I will not talk in class
*Age 9 Fourth Grade: I didn’t really need those fingers anyway!
*Age 10 5th Grade: Nothing’s Scary in the Fifth Grade
*Age 11 6th Grade: Jenny Got Ran Over by her Grandma
*Age 12 7th Grade: Youth Camp Stinks
*Age 13 8th Grade: “Talent” Show
*Age 14 9th Grade: (N)O Christmas Tree
*Age 15 10th Grade: The Newsboys Wouldn’t Ditch Their Friends
*Age 16 11th Grade: Acrophobia Gets You the Good Seats
*Age 17 12th Grade: In School Suspension

My Young Adult Years
*Dreams and Aspirations: The Long Road There
*Friends and Fellowship: Friends Don’t Get Friends Grounded
*My First Job
*How I Met Cool Daddy Part 1
*How I Met Cool Daddy Part 2
*Colonel Mustard on a Rollercoaster with a Plastic Fork

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About Jenn Rian

Jenn is a bored and sarcastic divorced mom of two who blogs and vlogs because the voices in her head tell her to. She blogs about as often as she showers, which isn't very often. Author of jennrian.com and coolestfamilyontheblock.com

Posted on November 19, 2010, in Flashbacks, Jenn, Mommy's Piggy Tales and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. I am in sheer awe. Not only of your awesome sweater, but in your ability to hang on to the most random stuff!

    You should seriously try to use those coupons! I think I recall a similar video watching experience (actually I think it was a reel-to-reel), where they divided the boys and girls. I still wonder what it is that they told the boys. It really does strike me as odd (only now- 20+ years later) that something that personal would be taught at school. It seemed normal at the time.

    I always enjoy reading your posts. 🙂

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  2. What a funny (but very real) post! I’ll believe that the sweater was indeed awesome, but the earrings were definitely cool as well! I’m glad a caring teacher helped you find the right room. And you saved that package!! Too funny! Karen (visiting from Group 3)

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  3. This is so funny!!! And thanks for describing that sweater, you were right, I would not have known how cool it was. lol. Funny and brave, don’t think I will be posting photos from middle school. Anywhere…. Ever…. 🙂

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  4. I love the sweater! 🙂 I can completely relate to your fears of junior high. I was the same way, and for me high school was even worse, since everyone else kept growing. I can’t tell you how many times I was elbowed in the head by kids who didn’t see me!

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