Get them in, get them fed, get them home! I love the first day of school. As a teacher, my role on the first day is to get every child to where they belong. I make sure they get their breakfast and lunch. Also, I have to make sure they know how they are going home and that they get there.
This year my role as a teacher is a bit different. I am co-teaching in two different grade levels, 3 classes. I have a regular duty. For the first day, I helped with the front of the school drop-offs and end of day pick-ups. When students were dropped off we attached bracelets to their arms showing how they will be going home. It goes very slowly because we are being careful to make sure we have the right information for each child. We do this for our own sanity and the sanity of our parents.
This first day was the first time in many years that I have done the Kindergarten and 1st grade pickups. It is amazing at the number of kids who do not recognize their last names. At least we had cards with their names and were able to get them home.
The mantra is still the same: get them in, get them fed, and get them home. My morning duty was still the same today but administration moved me to the back pickups where 2nd through 5th graders are dismissed. I am more familiar with those kids and cars and was able to get that system going a little quicker. I also started working directly with students during the day and was able to get to know some of the new students a little better. Then, I began talking with others about some of the new students who were struggling much more than they should have been.
I am also looking forward to learning about all of my students. We are getting new students starting each day. I am involved with 70 students regularly during the day. Some more directly than others.
My morning duty changes as of today. I am now in a high traffic area behind the cafeteria. Sometimes, last year, students were causing problems, because there were only other students back there. No adult supervision means trouble. I do enjoy seeing many students and I always tell them “Good Morning” or “Have a great day.” By the end of the year, if I have forgotten to say anything, the students will be saying it to me as they walk past me.
It is my goal to say something positive to the students, whether they are mine or not, as they start their day. The rest of my seems to be moving along smoothly. I am feeling better about my more set schedule. THEN, I go to my 2nd-grade class and the room is empty. The students were GONE! I learned the teacher had to leave suddenly to take care of her daughter.
Days 4 and 5
Still settling in, but definitely not a normal day at all for me. I chose to cover the second-grade class for their teacher because I was familiar with their routine and would be better able to keep those procedures in place, especially for the first week of school, then a substitute would. The second-grade teacher was afraid to have had to start all over come Monday. That worked out very well for all of us.
My biggest adventure happened both days at dismissal. Day 4 saw a sudden downpour in the middle of dismissal. We were able to keep the kids mostly dry and get them in their vehicles safely. I, however, ended up with very wet feet. My poor feet were wet for about 3 hours because they didn’t make it home soon enough. I really hate sitting in wet feet. Day 5 also rained. However, I forgot to grab my poncho. Thankfully it wasn’t pouring. It was just a light rain, but it takes quite a while to load the vehicles when it is raining. Two days in a row of wet feet.
Days 6 through 180 will continue to have adventures, but I love watching children grow and learn. There is nothing more awesome than that spark they get when they succeed at something difficult.
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