the kids who went up a slight grade and came down a mountain


 finally all back together in school this week, and the kindergarten made the most out of enjoying what mother nature had left behind for us to play with. we headed out to go sledding on a ‘hill’ that could best be described as no more than a 23-degree angle, though to see their eyes upon approaching it, it appeared to be their first encounter with the swiss alps. even so, it was a challenge to get to the top, as the snow was quite deep and their legs were quite tiny. but motivated they are, and they hiked up to the summit, over and over, jumped on sleds, headed down, and marched back up. 

all except for one little guy. he stayed on the sidelines, even when invited up, and instead rolled around and ran around and laid in and laughed and ate all the snow he could handle. when it was time to leave and stomp back in, he began crying and yelling out, ‘you didn’t let me go sledding!!!!!’ his outburst was met with great understanding by my class who simultaneously burst out laughing. it was at this point perhaps, that he realized he had made his own choices, and this was not a great argument. the sobbing stopped. 


There’s no fear when you’re having fun – Will Thomas

when everyone made it back inside, they warmed up, had a snack, went to music class, made puzzles, read books, ate lunch and suited up for another trip outside, this time to the playground. once out there, they saw that their familiar playground had been turned into a winter wonderland. there was fresh, fluffy, deep, white, sparkling snow everywhere, totally untouched by any other kids! 

they jumped in it, rolled in it, made snow balls and snowmen and snow castles, played with ice chunks, went down the slides covered with snow, filled buckets with snow, made snow angels, snapped icicles off of their playhouse, climbed things, tried to run in the snow, and loved every minute of it. after a long time spent playing on our ‘winter beach’ we headed back inside once again. after taking off all of our layers and hanging them to dry, everyone was absolutely exhausted. it was nap time. and we had earned it. 


image credit:


When you’re really having fun, you’re always doing it a little bit in a way that you’re not supposed to.

That’s when great things happen.

Annet Mahendru





36 responses »

  1. I absolutely dig the little guy who had refuse-to-sled remorse as you all got ready to go back from the hill, Beth. The class spontaneously laughing at his outburst is wonderful to teach him a little life lesson. I’m glad you got to relive the wonder of childhood hill-conquering with the little ones!


  2. I am so in awe of your ability to do this! We were not allowed to take our little ones out, usually because at least one of them (8 being special needs and 4 being typically developing little ones) had breathing or physical challenges. We would bring the snow in, as I mentioned before, in the two water tables, one with snow, shovels and buckets and the other filled with warmer water and floating ducks, boats and things. The one poor little one, we had to place him in a high chair with samples of each since he had spinal bifuda and was not able to sit at the level of the water tables. We would hold him, sometimes but he was an independent guy and preferred ‘independence’ in his own eyes, of the high chair. Perhaps he felt like King for the day? Smiles, Robin


  3. Great story, great quote 🙂 Perhaps not entirely appropriate, but I have a fave quote that came to mind when I read yours. Not sure who said it, but saw it on a stone bench at Minneapolis Institute of Arts: “There is a period of time when it is clear that you have gone wrong but you continue. Sometimes there is a luxurious amount of time before anything bad happens.” Love that one!

    And love your sledding stories. Sounds like you all needed a nap for sure.


  4. This brought back some fond memories. In Oklahoma City, Daddy had to drive us some miles to the only decent hill, and at the time it seemed equivalent to launching ourselves down the south face of Mt. Everest. In later years I had to laugh at what a minor little slope it really is. Your kids are so lucky. What fun to actually go sledding AT SCHOOL!


    • oh what great memories and yes, it’s all a matter of what you believe and your perspective. i am the one who feels most lucky to go sledding at school, believe me!


  5. Oh, I want to be 5 again! The funny thing is, I have a five year old and sometimes watching him struggle with figuring out how life works and his emotions, I think that being 5 must be the worst thing in the world! But to have that kind of unadulterated joy again–it would be worth it.


  6. What is it about a romp in the snow that brings out the kid in all of us? Was fun reading about your playtime with your kinders. How I remember those childhood days of playing in the snow until my mittens were caked with icicles and the fatigue that greeted me when I finally gave in and went inside….nap time was (and IS!) something I relish after playtime in the snow. (Then, again, at MY age, a nap is relished most every day!) Cute post! :>)


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