Tuesday, September 20, 2011

A letter

I found this letter on my desk over lunch, and it made my heart smile. It is from a first grader -- one of my students from last year. So sweet... I had to share.

I love my glasses -- and my super long arms! :)

Monday, September 12, 2011

A trip to fire station

We had an eventful morning in kindergarten -- with a walk to the local fire station! In honor of the 10th anniversary of 9/11, every student in our school wrote a thank-you note to our neighborhood firefighters. And with some donated cookies from Hy-Vee, we were off to salute our community heroes. As an added perk, our "book of the week" was Miss Bindergarten Takes a Field Trip with Kindergarten, so everything fell together perfectly.

It was such a fun trip and a beautiful day for the walk. But this evening, as I sat down to relax, I began to reflect on what a special morning it was. My students were simply joyful, entranced, and excited to be at the fire station, and as always, I soaked up every second of "sitting back and watching."

It all began on the walk to the station. Nearly every one of my students lives within one block of our 15 minute walk this morning, but you would never know it. Every house, every pretty flower, every crack in the sidewalk was a new adventure... and they had a comment for it all. "Look at that dog, Mrs. Anderson!" -- "Mrs. Anderson, look! I jumped over that big bump!" Sometimes we forget as adults how wonderful the world is through the eyes of a five-year-old. 

I spent my walk holding the hand of one of my little darlings. He's extra special to me because I just "get him." He might not have an ounce of self-control and he might blurt out at every opportunity, but he has a heart of gold, he's naturally curious and bright, and I just love him. But, to be honest, I held his hand not only because I wanted to, but also because if I didn't, he'd probably be in someone's backyard chasing a butterfly in less than a minute.

His commentary was honest and innocent -- and simply cracked me up. I'll give you my favorite quotes of the walk... and yes, they were really this random.

"This is a big hill. You should not roller-skate down this."
"That's an electrical box. Don't touch it."
"My aunt and uncle live close to here."
"I have fast shoes on. But, they can go slow too."
"Tell me if you see my aunt and uncle's house."
"I'm afraid of spider webs. And cactuses."
"There's the fire station! I see a flag pole. That's President Obama's flag. I saw it on t.v."
"I go to Morton Elementary School. I'm going to go to a big kid school one day, and all we're going to do is play with math toys."
"Mrs. Anderson, did you miss us last year when we didn't come to Morton?"

Oh, it was quite the walk. I loved every minute of it because it reminded me of the natural joy within a five-year-old. It made me literally ache for the simplicity of it.

So, we arrived at the fire station - rang the bell - and out come the stars of the show! If you know me... you know why I loved this field trip. :) They were a handsome bunch, and absolutely wonderful with the kids. With a mix of dramatic action, fancy fireman tools, a gushing water hose, a fire truck to crawl through, and a few tools from the ambulance, they had every student's full-on attention.

My main reflection of the day -- everything is bigger, shinier, more colorful, and better through a child's eyes.
We should all take a hint from our pint-size counterparts and everyday, remember to simply look around and say "wow."