20 Things Every 5-Something Should Know


Kindergarten is a tough time for a kid. You’re not in first grade, but you’re not in preschool anymore. You want to be independent, but there are so many unwritten rules for your behavior. Here’s a guide to navigating that awkward period where you’re no longer a baby, but not yet a big kid.

1. The Alphabet

Come on, guys. You’re halfway to ten years old. It’s “LMNOP,” not “NMNOP.” Also, it’s “twenty,” not “tenteen.” Seventeen, eighteen, nineteen, twenty. Got it? Good.

2. What Paste Tastes Like

You’ve got to experiment. You show me a kid with no regrets, and I’ll show you a kid who’s lived a boring life. Try the paste. Pick your nose and eat it. If you’re not living on the edge, it’s probably because you still don’t have really good balance!

3. If you’re a girl, boys have cooties. If you’re a boy, girls have cooties.

It’s just a medical fact. Stay clear, or you could get them too.

4. “And-a-Half” Doesn’t Matter

Just because you’re five and your friend is five and a half, it does not mean that he is better than you. In a few years, it’ll all even out. Don’t let them hold it over you.

5. Fire Trucks are Red

They’re red. And they go “woooo-oooo, wooo-oooo.” They’re not yellow. They don’t go “oooh-eeee, oooh-eeee.” Don’t be stupid.

6. Santa Claus is Real

I don’t care what your big brother says. He’s a poop face. Santa is real. My parents told me so. If you’re Jewish, he just doesn’t go to your house.

7. If you can run faster than someone else, you are better than that person.

If you win a race across the playground, you are better than the person you beat. At everything. Even things that have nothing to do with how fast you are. I don’t make the rules. I just follow ‘em.

8. It’s Okay to Cry

Don’t bottle those feelings up. It’s okay to cry if something is really important. Like if a goldfish dies. Or you run out of crackers. Especially goldfish crackers.

9. Don’t Touch The Stove

Seriously, it’s hot. Sometimes grownups say things, and they’re not true. But this one is. The stove is hot. Really hot. Don’t touch it.

10. No One Will Ever Be Stronger Than Your Dad

Your dad is the strongest person ever. He can lift you up over his head and open really tight jars. Other kids’ dads are not as strong. Make sure you let them know that.

11. Drawings of People Don’t Need Bodies, Just a Head, Arms, and Legs

Don’t even bother with bodies. Who needs ‘em? They take up valuable time and space. If you have to include a body, a fat person is a circle, and a skinny person is a straight line. Done and done.

12. Naps are For Babies

It does not matter how tired you are. Naps are for babies. Yes, if you do not nap, you will be very, very cranky in the afternoon. But if you do, then you are a baby. If you poop your pants while taking a nap, you will never ever recover. You will need to move to a new school. It’s that bad.

13. Learn How to Read

It may seem like a useless skill, but reading tells you lots of important stuff. Which animals are poisonous, what foods are most delicious, what channel Bob the Builder is on. Do not slack off on this. It will pay dividends.

14. You Can Only Have One Best Friend

Your teachers say that everyone is your friend. But you know better. You have to pick one best friend. Make sure every other friend knows that he or she is not your best friend. If you are a boy, your best friend should probably be a boy. If you are a girl, your best friend should probably be a girl. But look, it’s 2011. You don’t have to live by that. Whatever you do, though, change best friends often. Keep people guessing.

15. Police Are Cool

Police are strong and drive fast and have guns. They are really into justice. They are only helpful. In fact, they are the best people to talk to if you are in trouble. Police are never a bummer. Everyone knows this.

16. Strangers Are Dangerous

Strangers are big trouble. Sometimes strangers wear coats and have mustaches. Other times they look regular with no mustaches. It’s hard to tell the difference, since strangers are tall and kind of all look alike. Everyone is a suspect except your mom and dad! Even grandparents if you haven’t seen them in a while. Trust no one! (Except police.)

17. Stop, Drop, and Roll

If you are ever on fire, you need to remember to stop, drop, and roll. Grownups tell us this all the time. Probably that means everyone will be on fire at least once. This will come up! Remember it!

18. The Wheels on the Bus Go Round and Round

Round and round, round and round. It’s what wheels are for. Wheels on cars and trucks do the same thing. But bus wheels, for some reason, get a song.

19. Lunchables Are Delicious

The tiny juice box, cheese slices, and meat pogs are as delightful a cuisine as you could ever want. If you don’t get one for lunch, it is okay to cry.

20. You Can Be Batman or a Princess When You Grow Up, For Real

Dress for the job you want, not the job you have.

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