Wednesday, August 31, 2016

As I see many teacher friends posting about the first day of school I am reminded that our teachers have a big transition ahead next week, too. As we worry about our children...entering a new class (or in our case a new school), wondering if the teacher will like them, worried that they won't have friends, planning lunches and trying to find shoes that are easy to get on and off, it is good to remember that our teachers are having similar thougths.

They, too, wonder if the... other kids will like them, they, too, worry about finding friends and colleagues, they are planning lessons for children they haven't even met, designing seating charts for personalities that might clash, or get along TOO well. They are facing 20 unknown little egos in all their wonderful diversity and backed by 40 or more anxious parents vying for attention and reassurance. And they too, are looking for a good pair of comfortable shoes!

These professional people with advanced degrees can seem so unflappable, confident, self-assured...because they have to be, for their students. But our teachers are people, too. And every September they start a new job...because each group of children is different. It's bound to cause a little anxiety, a little insecurity.

I am in awe of these amazing people who every September enter a room full of little strangers with all their foibles and insecurities and strenghts and joys and over the next 10 months grow them into a group, a unit, a class, friends. They teach math and writing and social studies, but they also teach manners and coping skills and behaviour management. They offer affection and solace and discpline and structure. They encourage and cajole. They share laughter and wipe away tears.

Teachers spend as much time with our children as we do and most of them love our kids almost as much as we do. So as we enjoy this last long weekend of the summer I am cognizant that the teachers who will mentor my children this year are probably not at the beach but at Scholar's Choice buying supplies. They are planning and dreaming and cutting and pasting, writing names on notebooks and sharpening pencils. And I am so very grateful.

Please remember to pray for and encourage our teachers as we all make this big transition back to routines and learning; classrooms and school buses. They have the hardest and the best job around!

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