The First Day

What do you remember about the first day of school?

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As a teacher, I continue to experience the first day of school every year.  And every year I have those same feelings of nerves and excitement. In my multiage class I get the best of all worlds–I get to loop with my students entering second and third grade and I get new first grade students every year.

Today was our first day of school and it began with hugs and smiles…from returning students and parents.  We got to catch up a little and students easily said good-bye to their parents as the school day began.  And we met our new students with the excitement of beginnings.  Nervous energy–ours and theirs–reminded us of the important milestone of starting a new school year.  Those first days are filled with establishing the routines that will mark our community all year long.

My highlight of the day was watching my students work in groups, returning students facilitating the activity for their younger classmates.  After discussing the highlights of their summer (everything from watching TV to running through the sprinklers, trips to visit cousins and grandmas to plenty of beach time, camps of every type–have you ever gone to fishing camp?–to playing at the park near home), students selected four of them to draw and write on sticky notes.  Then as a table group (teams of four), they sorted their summer favorites and created categories to describe them.  Finally each group created a graph that we will come back to in the next few days to both learn more about graphing and about each other.

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While we wrote and read, sorted and classified we also began to form ourselves as a learning community where everyone has something to offer and much to learn–teachers and students alike.

I was exhausted at the end of the school day…and I suspect the same was true of my students.  But I can’t wait until tomorrow.  The first day of school marks a milestone, but it the days that follow that are the reason I teach.

What do you remember about the first day of school?

One thought on “The First Day

  1. Pingback: A new beginning | Happenings on the Hill

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