We had our open house this afternoon so that kids and parents could come to meet their new teacher. It's the real kick off for the new year. I love meeting the kids for the first time (or seeing them again if I knew them in kindergarten) and seeing them with their families.
Last year was my first year in first grade and meeting the kids was a whole new experience. The two years before that I was teaching our gifted fifth grade class and I knew most of the class long before they arrived in my room. The year before that I had looped up to fifth grade with my class. So, it has been a long time since I have gotten a bunch of new kids just like the previous year.
I really enjoyed meeting them this afternoon, but as I watched them wander around checking out the room and each other, I felt a tinge of disappointment. I don't have an attachment to them (yet). For all the challenges of last year, I adored those kids. I want them back.
I know that in a few days I will love these little ones just as much. I know that I will be carrying their joys, successes, frustrations, and issues with me all day everyday. But right now they seem like outsiders in my classroom.
It's time to think about the best ways to make it our classroom and make it quick.
I love meeting and watching my new kiddos each year too- and I do spend a lot of time prior to that first meeting wondering what the dynamic will end up being once we're all settled. I spend the first week or two of school on a Colors unit- it seems to bond my students very quickly, make them feel at ease, transition well from home (on red day they can wear and/or bring something red from home, same for blue, yellow, orange, purple, green, etc) and they're eager to return day after day, and can be patient when things don't run too terribly smoothly socially or while learning new school routines, routines, that no matter how long I've taught, are always overwhelming (lunch line, sitting at tables in the cafeteria with loads of other loud students....WOW!). My first week of school I drop dead from exhaustion every night, and have to nurse my voice, not because I've yelled or strained it while teaching, but because I'm talking almost constantly.
This year, Uncle Sam deploys my husband on the first day I have with students. Ought to be interesting! I know we'll have a great year- you will too!
i like to spend time with kids
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