Friday, June 10, 2011

The End of an Era...

Today was my last day, of my last school year as a preschool teacher.  I woke up this morning like any other morning.  I didn't really think it was a big deal.

Apparently it was a big deal - because my mind was filled with sweet memories all day. 

There's something special about a preschool room.  It's a place where scribbled smiley faces are okay after each sentence of my parent letters, and dirty, sticky hands are proof of a productive day.  It's where kisses are tolerated, and even requested by kids who accidentally sometimes call me 'mommy'.  Preschool rooms are truly 'no judgement zones', because preschoolers just haven't learned how to judge others yet.  Phrases like "I love you, friend - and I love pickles, too" are commonly heard, and there is never a shortage of hugs for a friend in need (or a teacher in need, for that matter). 

It's even a place where it's okay for boys to still play with baby dolls :)

It's a place where you're never not usually laughed at for trying new things :)

A place where baby dolls must be read to - regardless of whether their face is being smushed...

A place where water is valued as gold :)

And silliness is encouraged :)

Yes - being a preschool teacher is a tough job.  It can be backbreaking, emotionally draining, and absolutely exhausting.  Ten 3-4 year olds, by myself, for the past seven and a half years.  I'm telling you - exhausting.  But so rewarding.  So worth it

Sometimes at the beginning of the school year, I get a parent or two who fully expects that by the end of the year, their 4 year old should be reading novels.  My response is usually something like 'lets learn letter sounds, first....'.  So from September to May, we learn our letters, how to write them, what sounds they make, how to recognize them, how to rhyme words, making patterns, sorting objects, matching items, cutting on the line, making graphs, recognizing numbers....and the list goes on.  These are all important things - but what I love to see at the end of the year is not how neatly they can write their name, or how high they can count - no.  What really counts is what they've learned about being a friend.  What really counts is that now they know how to work out their problems, instead of throwing themself on the floor in an emotional breakdown.  I love to see kids 'getting it'.  Like yesterday, when one of my 4 year olds said "You know you just pushed me down?  Well, I forgive you - because that's what the Bible says to do.  So I'll do it.". Or - after a whole year of trying to teach them how to pray, one of them says "Dear Lord - please - help me to love you mucher.".  That's learning at its finest.  Those are life skills.  Yes, they're only 4 - and they've go so much learning ahead of them.  But this stuff - well, I hope that it won't fade away. 

The lessons I've learned over the past 7 years will follow me wherever I go.  Patience (wow...patience...), forgiveness, understanding, kindness (it really goes a long way with a 4 year old...), and the ability to get on the floor, at someone elses level, and just be.  Just do.  Just sit.  It's a beautiful thing.  Something I plan on doing a lot of once Carter is home. 

So - as the school year wraps up - I'm reminded of all the things I've taught, and more importantly - all the things I've learned. 

Like saying "that's what the Bible says to do - so I'll do it..."

And "Lord - help me to love you more..."

The things we can learn from our children.  Amazing. 

I'm grateful that I'll still be with this class until August, because I just love them all so much.  And with summer comes sunglasses, swimsuits, and sprinklers.  I know we'll have our fair share of fun. 

One Thing I Know For Sure:  Becoming a preschool teacher was one of the best choices I've made...and I'm so thankful for the opportunity to love on so many littles!

***A few bits of adoption info***

We finally got our homestudy notorized and sent to us!  So now we're ready to sent out our i600a to get imigration approval!  We're REALLY praying that this doesn't take the 'typical' 8 to 10 weeks.  Pray with us, please!

AND - I got an email today saying that my passport is done and has been sent out! 

LASTLY - don't forget to buy your adoption tshirts - time is ticking away, as we'll be ordering on June 20th!  So - help bring Carter home, AND score a cute (or 'cool'...depending on your gender...!) tshirt!


  1. As a pre-k teacher (4-5 year olds) I really "got" everything you said. We had our pre-k graduation yesterday for our kids and I was so proud. You work with the kids all year long and when they get ready to leave you, you hope that they have learned what you have taught. As teachers, if you listen not just with your ears but with your mind and your heart, you can learn so much from the children in your class. I am glad they have left you with sweet memories. I am sure that you will cherish them just as much as they will cherish you.

  2. I taught Kindergarten before I had Rylee... I related to every single word. What's so fun is finding a "Friend Request" on Facebook from a former Kindergarten student! (Okay, kind of fun... it does tend to make me feel old, too! :) Are your plans to stay home once Carter is home?


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