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Lilli goes to a new kindergarten

“Lilli, are you coming? Breakfast is ready,” mom calls from downstairs. Lilli swallows. She has a big lump in her throat and is not at all hungry, because today is her first day of kindergarten. Her big brother Steven will be going to a new school soon, but his first day of school isn’t for another week. Lilli thinks “He’s so lucky!” and goes downstairs to the kitchen.
Mom and Steven at are the table. The sun shines through the window and Lilli’s big brother is already eating cornflakes out of a bowl. “I’m not hungry,” says Lilli and slides onto a chair. “Oh, come on! says Steven. “How can you not be hungry?” “But honey, we already talked about the new kindergarten yesterday,” says Mom. “I’ll take you there and will stay until you’ve looked at everything and met the other kids. Eat a little bit of cereal and then we’ll go.”
Lilli is still a little bit scared when she and her mom get to the kindergarten half an hour later. But her kindergarten teacher Nina looks pretty friendly. Nina shows Lilli her hook on the wardrobe and then takes her and Mom into the group room. “So Lilli, let me show you everything and introduce you to the other kids. Look, there’s Imke. She’s five years old and will help you a little at the beginning.” A girl with a friendly smile is standing in front of Lilli. “Hello, Lilli. Look, we almost have the same color hair!” She holds a long strand of red hair in front of Lilli’s face. “It’s true!” says Lilli and takes a deep breath. Right away, she thinks Imke is very nice. Mom and Nina stand at the door and talk to each other, but Imke pulls her further into the group room.
“We’re playing veterinarian,” explains Imke. “Look, this is Milla and Elisa. If you want, you can play with us.” “Are you the new girl?” asks the blonde Milla. “Yes,” answers Lilli. “My name is Lilli and I moved here a week ago because Dad got a new job.” “Do you like animals?” asks Elise. She is holding a stuffed tiger. “I like wild cats the best. I’m the assistant at the vet and hold all the cats.” “I like small animals a lot, rabbits, hedgehogs and squirrels,” Lilli explains. “Really? You like rabbits? Me too!” says Imke. “I got two real rabbits for my birthday, their names are Muckel and Stupsi.”
Nina claps her hands. “Children, be quiet, I want to say something!” she calls. “Everybody come here. Let’s make a circle of chairs and I want to introduce Lilli, our new kid in the star group.” The children all get a chair and sit in a circle around Nina. Lilli is allowed to sit between her mom and Imke. First Lilli says a little bit about herself and her move to the new house. This is really hard for her... but Mom helps a little and it’s always better when there’s two of you anyway. Then they all sing a song together, followed by Nina reading them a story. Mom stays sitting in the circle the whole time and Lilli starts to feel a little better.
Everybody goes out into the yard after the breakfast break. Imke shows Lilli the slide, the swing and the playhouse. “But we are here now! This is our police station,” says a boy with a red hat. “That’s Matze, he always plays police,” explains Imke. “Sometimes he’s a little crazy, but he can be very nice too.” A girl is standing behind Matze wearing red overalls with white polka dots. “You can’t play with us, our gang is already full!” says Felicitas. “I don’t care!” answers Imke, and walks on with Lilli. “We wanted to look at the flowers and vegetables anyway.”
There are some garden beds in a corner of the yard. “Look Lilli, this is my friend Mali, you already saw her in the circle of chairs,” says Imke and points to the girl watering the zucchini plants together with the teacher Saskia. “Can we help you water?” she then asks. “Of course, no problem,” says Saskia and gives Lilli and Imke a small watering can too. “We planted sunflowers over there,” says Mali, “and radishes and carrots are growing over there.” Lilli is amazed: There were no garden beds in her old kindergarten. She’s really happy because she loves yardwork.
Once all the plants have been watered, the girls head back to the house together with Saskia. “And what do you think of it here with us?” asks the teacher. “It’s really great!” answers Lilli and goes over to her mom, who is sitting on a bench next to the sandbox. “Tomorrow I can stay here by myself,” Lilli says to her. “I have Imke, she’ll help me a little. And the other kinds are pretty nice too.” Lilli’s mom is relieved and smiles: “I’m happy about that, my dear! Do we want to go home now?” Lilli nods and her first day of kindergarten comes to a close. She’s already looking forward to tomorrow and her new friends.

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