Today I wore crazy hair (pigtails, or "curly bat tails" as my daughter calls them) because it is Spirit Week and I am an elementary school teacher and we do things like that.
Today I had a message from a parent before school started about a complicated situation that required me to speak with other professionals (in my curly bat tails) in order to figure out next steps.
Today I hugged former students who came to visit me and admired their crazy hair and hats.
Today I ate a delicious piece of zucchini bread my student teacher shared with me.
Today I read my class a chapter in Lulu and The Brontosaurus and we all sang her song: "I wanna, I wanna, I wanna get a bronto, bronto, bronto, brontosaurus for a pet!" as we walked down the hall to Art.
Today I tried to convince a student to start writing.
Today I taught subtraction on a number line to four rotations of students and tried to convince them to look at me instead of the blue chair, insisting I was more interesting and more attractive.
Today I channelled Vanilla Ice by using "STOP- Collaborate and Listen" as a call and response chant to get students attention.
Today I met with students reading at level M and helped them set up their notebooks to stop and jot at the end of every chapter.
Today I called a parent after school to talk about my homework policy ( I don't assign it) and give ideas for home practice for strengthening foundational math skills.
Today my ultra vulnerable blog post was shared on the CCIRA blog: https://ccira.blog/2019/09/24/teacher-lost-and-found/
Today my son came home with his new violin.
Today my daughter painted a box and tried to put small dixie cups on top to make a 3D bunny.
Today I thought I had no Slice to share until I thought about my day and all the stories hiding in each of these moments.
How was your day?
I smiled and said hello to my children's PE teacher, who just happens to be my former high school classmate as he came up behind us at Stop and Shop. I hoped he didn't see what was on the grocery conveyer belt- Starbursts, Skittles, Gummy worms, Sour Patches, and more. Not a nutritious element in sight.
We had come from the orthodontist. My son, Alex, had his palate expander taken out after many months of wear. While braces were on the agenda, he had an 8 week reprieve. I had promised him all the chewy candies he wanted after his palate expander came out, because he wasn't able to have anything chewy for all those months.
We might have gone a little chewy crazy.
Someday, far from now, I hope my son will remember this chewy day of celebration and a mom who was willing to buy him all the gummy treats.
Sunscreen, beach towels and lazy mornings are giving way to new notebooks, sharp yellow pencils and alarm clocks set. Tomorrow my children and I return to school. Alex starts third grade, Megan begins first grade, and I return to teaching third grade. My new students do not arrive until Thursday but two days of meetings await.
Megan's teachers sent home a parent information form to fill out. One question was, "What do I hope for my child this year?" That got me thinking about both my children= and my students- and what I hope for us all this year. I will write this from the perspective of what I hope my children experience, knowing that what I wish for them is what I need to make happen for my own students.
So now I have my work cut out for me, with a list of all the things I need to do for my students, too! I wish us all a happy year and so much more.
Kathleen Neagle Sokolowski