Last year Rachel and I kept our relationship a secret from the cast. I introduced her as "a choreographer from Denver," and although the kids figured out we were good friends, they never suspected more than that. Since I was new and still proving myself, I figured she'd get a lot more respect from them if they knew her as "the choreographer from Denver" rather than "our teacher's sister." And they did.
This year, though, they started to put the pieces together. One by one kids have figured out that we're actually related, and when they ask I don't lie about it.
Today Rachel came up to choreograph, and she brought Ben and Jack with her. Jesse was practicing with the pit orchestra for the first time, Ben worked on homework, Rachel taught "Suppertime" to the Snoopies and the featured dancers, and I took care of Jack and supervised the rest of the cast while they made Valentines for the Valentine's Day scenes in the show. It's also Parent-Teacher conferences this week, so I would step out of the room periodically to confer with parents (we're all about multi-tasking here). I took Jack with me into the hall since he was a little freaked out by all the big kids fawning over him and singing, and I introduced him to one of the parents as my nephew.
When I got back into the room, some of the kids looked a little confused.
"So... he's your nephew?"
"So... are you related to Mr. Mason?"
"No, Ms. Mason is my sister."
"Like, she's my little sister."
"As in we have the same parents, we grew up together, we shared a bedroom until I was in sixth grade, and we were both in You're a Good Man, Charlie Brown when I was a senior in high school and she was a freshman and she was Linus' blanket and it was really kind of creepy having a lady as the blanket in the dance."
(slight pause, then)
"Aww! That's awesome!"
And, in fact, it is.