Having retired from the classroom a few years ago, the first day of school is always the hardest for me. On the one hand, I love seeing all the pictures of my former students, now so grown up, posted on Facebook. I remember each one and the joy they brought into my life. I pray that each is doing well and knows how special they are. I hope their new teacher will get to know them well and do her part to help them grow, and stretch, and learn. I take pride in knowing I have some small part in their current success.
On the other hand I grieve for the students that I won’t get the opportunity to know, I miss the anticipation I felt as I planned a new activity that I hoped would enhance the learning in my classroom. I yearn for the excitement of the first day with all the wonderful possibilities stretched out before us. I long to see the uncertainty and apprehension in their eyes change to joy and confidence as each child realizes they have what it takes to be successful. I would love to see worry melt off the faces of the moms and dads as the children reunite with them at the end of the first day with a smile on their face.
On this day, more than any other, I wonder if I have made the right decision. So to all the classroom teachers out there, I hope you can put aside all the work you have already put in to get ready for this day, and all the work that will have to be done so that each child can have a successful year, to enjoy your time in the classroom. I pray that you will realize what a wonderful gift it is to be a teacher and treasure the moment.