Thursday, September 11, 2008

Back To School Night

Just walked in the door from "back to school night" for my kindergartner. Of course, it is raining and probably the darkest night in the history of dark nights. I admit, I dawdled a bit to make sure that the kids would all be sleeping before I came home.
I don' t think my parents ever attended a back to school night - I remember leaving things on my desk along with everyone else in preparation, but since I am the youngest of 5, I'm sure my parents already had a pretty good idea of what went on in school. Or maybe they were just tired.
At the time, it bothered me a little - but now, I so get it.
There is nothing like being a parent to make you understand your own a little more.
And while I have been lucky enough to make every back to school night for my two oldest, all bets are off on the 3rd one. I'm tired. I've been through the same speech by the same wonderful teacher. And though they say that those drawings hanging on the wall are from this class, they look suspiciously like the same ones from my daughter's class four years ago....
One cool thing that is different - in our schools we are seeing a heavier focus on character education - with kinders it starts simply - helping them to establish self-esteem and a positive attitude by reinforcing that each one is unique and special. I think all good teachers have always done this without it being part of a formal program - what teachers helped you to believe in yourself?
I'm going to pour a glass of wine, take these beastly shoes off, check the doors one more time, peek at the children (2 out of 3 sleeping - I should have sat through a red light), close my eyes and think about how grateful I am for those who believed in me - including my parents who never attended a back to school night....

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Over the years, I’ve had intentions of writing a few of my teachers and letting them know they DID make a difference one way or another. I think you tend to sit back and ponder this as your kids start school….which teacher(s) will connect with him (McKnight, Zuniga, Menking, Willard, LaFerrara, Badrak, Nelson, Maddox)? Which teacher(s) will make him work his butt off for that “A”, but earn his respect they deserve in the long run (Dr. Sower)? Who will be his first teacher crush (Mr. Menking)? Which teacher(s) will instill that love for learning that lasts a life time (my grandfather)? Okay – so those were MY answers, but when I drop Thomas off at school, I wonder what goes on in those classrooms that is sticking with him? Which memories will he pull out of his hat in 20+ years? As a parent, I’d like to think I know which teachers and coaches are making a difference in his life, and I hope I’m still around for him to share that with me 25 years from now.