Today I spent most of my day pouring over my state standards and county pacing guides to plan my teaching for the year. Outside my classroom a violent lighting storm raged, but in my classroom it was quiet and peaceful. I couldn’t help but imagine that on Monday twenty-two excited students would storm my classroom filling it with activity, noise, and excited children ready to learn. The peaceful days of preschool are almost over.
On the first day of school, hundreds of sugared-up children will be dropped off by their thankful parents and will manage to find their way to our classrooms. In the ensuing chaos we’ll begin our first day of school by meeting our new students and beginning to establish our routines. The morning will fly by with lots of instructions on everything from how to walk, how to speak, and hopefully something close to educational. The students will eat lunch, we’ll head back for a few more activities and the day will come to an end. The school will quickly drain of kids and the teachers will be left to put the room back in order and plan for the next day.
As I sat alone in my quiet classroom today, I was tempted to wish that it would stay empty and quiet forever. Yet, one of the great parts of elementary teaching is that as you stand in front of a class of children, you’re always a breath away from unpredictable chaos. A teacher is like a lion tamer who accomplishes amazing feats when others would be torn apart in minutes.
Although I love my quiet time, I look forward to the excitement and energy that the kids will bring. My worst day of teaching has to be better than my boring lesson planning. Bring on the kids.
(In the comments below, pleasetell me what you love about the first day of school.)