first day, hopes, new year

A Hope for the First Day of School

In the movies they often speak about that one day that changes everything.  The moment in which the world stood still or tilted on its side or whatever cosmic thing that can happen, happened.  That day that changed someone forever.  And as much as I love the movies, I don’t think our lives can depend on just one day.  I think it can depend on many “one day’s,” a collection of big days that compounds us and define us, creating the person we want to be.

One of those days is the first day of school.  The real first day, not the ones where parents show up and you wear your finest clothes and you smile and socialize and talk and try to not show how insanely nervous you are.  No, the one after that.  The one where the students show up after the bell rings and try to remember where their desks are, try to remember your name, try to remember what was all said the day before.  That day can change everything.
We worry about the impression we make on parents, did we get our message across?  Did we plant the seed of relationship?  Do they really trust us as professionals?  But do we worry enough about the impression we make on our students?  Has that seed of trust been planted or is it simply taken for granted?
So on that first day of school, that real first day, I want to reach out and connect.  I want to laugh a lot.  I want to excite, I want to work, and I want to bare myself.  I want to invest, to relish, and to trust my students.  I want them to feel they are at home, that our room is safe, and that 5th grade will be just as magical as they hoped it would.  I want to make a day that changes their lives, I want to be part of their collection of “one day’s.”  I hope it is not asking too much.    

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