At the grocery store checkout, looking at the cover of TIME magazine with 4-and-a-half-year-old Duncan:
“Duncan, do you know who that is?” I ask.
“Nope,” he says.
“That’s Albert Einstein. He was a very famous scientist.”
“Oh. I learned about someone famous today at preschool!”
“Yeah! He was a farmer.”
“A famous farmer? That’s cool. What did he do to become famous?”
“He had a farm… We sang a song about him.”
I am trying to think what famous farmers might make an appearance in a preschool curriculum. They learned about Martin Luther King and Rosa Parks last week. Perhaps this week they are talking about Cesar Chavez, or maybe George Washington Carver?
“Duncan,” I ask, “do you remember what the farmer’s name was?”
“Wait… do you mean, Old MacDonald?”
“Yep! That’s him!”
“Oh, yes… I think I’ve heard of him.” The older couple standing in front of us in line turn around and give me an appreciative grin at this, all of us stifling laughter.
“Well,” Duncan says, oblivious to the twinkling in the grownup eyes above his head, “that’s ’cause he’s really famous!”