Here we go folks! This is where the race begins. We’ll have a teachers’ meeting this morning filled with hope, encouragement, eagerness and a healthy dose of apprehension. We’ll be introduced to new employees, new procedures, and new expectations. We’ll join together for lunch, greet people we didn’t get to see during the summer, and then be dismissed to finish our individual preparations. We’ll get our class lists and make any adjustments needed before the children arrive on Wednesday (I initially prepared for 18 students). We’ll decorate our rooms for our “welcome” night and get our paperwork ready for parents. Then, ready or not…the whistle will blow and we will surge forward to begin a new year.
No matter what we do today and tomorrow there will be surprises. There will be problems. There will be misunderstandings. There will be parents who are overjoyed to see their child’s name on my list. There will be parents who say, “oh, no, not HER!” There will be students who have waited all summer to walk proudly through my door and be a “big kid” now. And there will be others who have dreaded the day and fear what might happen when Mom gets out of their sight. New parents are apprehensive about the changes in their life and what the school expects of their child. Experienced parents may be even more apprehensive because they KNOW what is expected and are not looking forward to homework, testing, and activity schedules. For the first few weeks we will all be a little stressed.
This is when I like to remind myself and everyone else that school is a marathon not a sprint. Kindergarten is just the beginning of a lifetime of responsibility and expectations, of learning and performing. Each year of education adds to a child’s understanding of the world and his/her place in it. School is where we begin training for the future and help children discover the possibilities out there. And a big race requires a big support effort from a team of coaches and trainers. We’re all in this together folks! Everyone who connects with a child each day adds to that child’s experience. Please remember to be calm and prayerful as we begin our race together.
Join me in anticipation of a great year!