Tuesday, May 26, 2015

End of the year musings

Well, another end of the school year has come and gone . . .

The room is packed up tight, desks stacked in the corner, chairs tower over them.  My workspace is wiped clean - no papers, no clips, no books scattered about.  The plants are gone, the printer sits quietly in the corner.  The cords are unplugged, the colorful messages packed away.

I dislike the end of the year. 

It's not that I don't enjoy summer - I do.  I love lazy mornings, having time to write, being with my kids.  I love the pool, spur of the moment activities, seeing family.  I love reading, thinking, dreaming, getting organized.  I embrace this time every year.  It's a time to see things with fresh eyes.

But I miss my students.

I was laughing the other day -- being a little dramatic as usual.  In the office I was saying, "You give them to me for 200 days, tell me to care about them, encourage them, make them love reading, writing, and engaging in their learning; then you rip them from me and send them off to find their life."  It was dramatic - done for effect - but in my heart, I miss them. 

Sometimes I think a teacher may be the only person who really understands.  Now I celebrate from afar - most are at the high school across the football fields and parking lots.  I look at it every morning during our moment of silence and think of them before during back to the new ones in my charge.  I hope that they will find successes through challenges; that they will love and engage in what they are learning; that they will carve out a unique life path that will fit.

I still miss them.

So the end of the year brings some sadness with it.  It's a time of letting go and trusting.  Trusting that the seeds were planted in fertile minds, trusting that lessons will echo, trusting that it's really not about what I did anyway.  I was there to help, encourage, and care . . . but the hard work was done by the student. 

So I step back.  I smile.  I face a new group and care - knowing that the end of the year will come again.  It's worth it. 

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