David Rabbitborough's A to Z of Australian Species

 

THE KINDERGARTEN TEACHER

Research has shown that continuous exposure to small children for periods of longer than a few years causes peculiar changes in adult humans. They start to do bizarre things like wearing fluffy slippers and watching the Midday Show. So, as with many insect species, the raising of human young has become the job of specialists within the colony.

These specialised drones are called Childcare Workers or Kindergarten Creatures and they have many remarkable characteristics. To begin with they are immediately distinguishable by an unusual facial expression: a sort of combination of transcendent calm and terminal fatigue, and they have a strange repetitive and monotonic cries. Researchers have found that they seem to repeat three main calls over and over again "Jason put that down", "Matthew, don't do that" and "Leave Yolanda alone."

Whereas other humans walk upright, Childcare Workers spend most of their time on all fours foraging for pieces of Lego. They have extremely powerful arms from separating children from each other and toys, and seem to have the capacity to endure extraordinary levels of noise for long periods. Yet even with their special talents they are still often gathered in pubs after work going through what is almost certainly a recuperation process.

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