Oh teachers! I truly appreciate you mama to teacher! You mold & shape young minds etc… But, for reals, after a particularly hectic weekend, I look forward to Monday…because it’s your turn to get my little heathens. Right now though, on this last day of teacher appreciation & state testing, I appreciate you teacher to teacher.
When I was nineteen I had my first teaching job as an afternoon worker at a daycare. Y’all, daycare work is tough & gross, but I have some awfully hilarious memories from those years! I have teacher friends from that job who still hold very dear pieces of my heart.
My second teaching job, I had absolutely no idea what I was doing! My poor teacher friend at that school had to walk me through that entire year!
Then there was the school where I spent some of the most difficult years of my life; I will never ever forget the love those ladies gave me! I miss you all!
Now here I am ten (cough cough) or so years past that first job, at a relatively new teaching job with ladies I already consider close friends!
We teachers go through all parts of life together don’t we? Babies, losing babies, adoptions, divorces, losing parents…I’ve experienced and watched as a group of teachers flocked together to surround our own wounded. But…sadly, my dear ladies (sorry fellas, I haven’t been privileged to work with a male elementary teacher) we have also flocked together to attack.
So, this teacher appreciation week, I’ve been thinking about all the teachers I have known….
The strict ones whose quiet lines rival that of the North Korean military (except for that weird long stride…you would never put up with those shenanigans), whose mere glance strikes fear into the hearts of children and sometimes other teachers, whose test papers are never late, and their classroom works like a well oiled machine, I love you ladies! You keep us grounded. Without you schools would be all kinds of crazy!
The free spirits whose classrooms are full of festivities, whose super creative bulletin boards are the envy of pinteresters everywhere, pesky paperwork is lost in your sea of fun, and the cafeteria is a party when you arrive, I love you girls! You make the heavy light. You bring joy into our hallways.
I love you all! Teacher to teacher, I love you! Your gift from me…a teacher…is to stop judging! I will not scoff at the strict one as she firmly corrects a straggling line walker, I refuse to jealously roll my eyes at the free spirit when she plays silly string, whip cream, glitter tag with the kids… I appreciate you all.
Just yesterday I was standing with a group of about 7 teachers, all different teaching styles, all different personalities. We were watching our classes on the playground. My own sweet daughter came to me with a friend and wanted to show me the new hand clap game she had learned. You know… like… “Ms. Sue (clap, clap, clap) Ms. Sue (clap, clap, clap) Ms. Sue from Alabama…” Or “Lemonade (clap, clap, clap) crunchy ice..,” Those cutie little sing song chants we all learned as girls. I indulged her and smiled and watched. I’m not sure how the entire thing went, but when I heard, “Hey girls let’s have some fun, here comes Tommy with his pants undone…” I died. I slowly turned, jaw dropped to look at my teacher team behind me. My friend whose daughter is younger than mine was equally shocked. We stared at each other like we had just witnessed the murder of a fluffy bunny. My daughter & her friend skipped away oblivious to their super inappropriate little chant.
I looked pleadingly at my army of teachers. One teacher/mama laughed & told a similar story of overhearing her daughter say something along the lines of, “do it like a donkey…” Another teacher gave me sound advice about helping the girls understand what their words meant. The other teachers chimed in and assisted me in forming a coherent response that didn’t involve weird silence or insane shouting.
See…I had my own little team of professionals. Good mamas & friends! Ladies I trust whether they are the strict one or the free one, they all helped. I marched over to my daughter & her friends with renewed confidence and appropriately explained why “Tommy with his pants undone” is not the best chant to sing.
So… thanks ladies, mamas, friends, teachers! I love y’all! You make me better! I’m sorry for being ‘judgey’! I need you all! I appreciate every single one of you!