We returned from Christmas break yesterday. Many of my students were eager to return to their friends and even their work. I think most children actually like school, even if they don’t always admit it. School is not only a safe haven for many children- it is a world they understand. It is an environment that is predictable and logical. Children appreciate the structure of school and many thrive within the safety of that structure.
Three of my little girls are my “assistant teachers”, not by my choosing, or even the election of their peers. They just know, instinctively, that it is their place in life. If they don’t boss their classmates around, and tattle to me when they misbehave, who else will do it? If they don’t tell me that I forgot to change the helper board, how will I ever discover it on my own? LOL These girls have found their calling in life. I’m sure they will all grow up to be terrific mothers, wives, and teachers!
Two of my boys sat around and wasted most of the day. They played with their pencils, watched the other children work, chewed their shirt sleeves, put their heads down, talked to their neighbors, and generally goofed off in any creative way that they could invent. It will be at least a week before they are functioning again. They represent the challenges of teaching. Not all children are willing and eager to learn.
Most of my students just did what they have always done. They told me about their Christmas break. They played with their best buddies. They did the work I asked them to do. They devoured the pizza we had for lunch. They marveled at the ice storm outside that caused us to miss recess. They giggled with joy over the privilege of going to music class their first day back. They promised to be back tomorrow.
So we begin a new year together. Please join us on the journey.