Saturday, August 8, 2009

Wonderful Beginnings

It was open house at our Elementary School. The teachers were bustling around with last minute preparations, as was I. Just another hundred copies and I'd be finished....

When the doors opened, it was amazing to watch. From where I was standing at our PTO table, I had a clear view of the front door. I waved to the parents and children I knew, as they entered the school. "You know TOO many people," my friend said jokingly. Her family was new to our school last year.

I noticed the difference in the children, and could guess their grade level based on their behavior. The kindergarteners clung tightly to mom or dad's leg - with the exception of one young gentleman, dressed in shorts, sneakers, a white shirt and blue tie. He was very conversant and had more manners than many adults I meet from day to day. I stuck my hand out and said "hello sir - I can tell I just need to meet you! My name is Ms. Linda...." I can tell that he will bring a smile to my face every time I see him in the hallway or the lunchroom.

The second graders - where my children fall - walked confidently down the hall. The girls arm in arm and the boys discussing their latest discoveries in a video game, or their latest achievements on the ball field. They had FINALLY made it to the 2nd and 3rd grade hall. Their final destination before they moved over to the middle school. They even have LOCKERS! WHOO HOO!

I thought back through our time at the school. I am a mom that STRONGLY believes in parental involvement in their child's education. I believe that teachers need as much support was we can provide. The students too, need to know that their education is important to us, as parents, that we are engaged and a part of the system.

I thought about it while I was handing out information. This is our third year at the school.... our forth participating with PTO. That was interesting in itself. We moved to a new school district the year before their kindergarten year. The principal at the old school district would hear nothing of it. At the new, she said "hasn't happened before, but it's all good. C'mon!" And so we went. We listened and became involved.

Being involved, being of service has been an amazing gift.... to me. Being able to greet the children in my kids' classes by name when I see them in the hallway, or the lunch room. Having them wave and SMILE at me. Knowing that a teacher will actually be able to spend time with her infant son rather than spending the evening cutting out 18 sets of an upcoming project.

I am very, very blessed to be able to be there.

It's been a wonderful beginning! Here's to the rest of the year!

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