Here was the first blog challenge question:
Tell us the story of the first group of children for whom you were "Teacher." Maybe it was at a school, but maybe it wasn't. Maybe it was a childcare centre, or a daycamp, or a swimming pool or a dance studio or a hockey rink. Maybe it was in your own home, or their home. Who were they? Who were you? What did it FEEL like? Maybe it was amazing. Maybe it was terrible. Either way, there is a story there. Tell it.
I know I posted this under the #kinderbog hash tag, but I'll repost it here.
When did I first feel like a teacher? That would have to be when I taught PreK for the YMCA back in 1997. It was a summer job in between grad classes when I was saving up money to marry my husband. I taught 4 and 5 year olds and loved it. I had my own room I could decorate. I had my own class to plan for with a plan book. I had my own assistant who was a wonder with kids. I also had my first real challenge and her name was A.
A was a kid who loved to dress up and run around. She loved drawing and painting. What she didn't love was any kind of change and boy was I a change from her last teacher. She let me know it from the get-go! I remember thinking I had my work cut out for me with her. A would hit other kids and lock the doors to all the rooms there. She was one of those kids that the directors talk about kicking out, and I told them not to. Just give me a chance I would say.
I tried everything and seemed to get to her until one day when her estranged dad came back into the picture. Then everything changed again for her. She was hurting kids, hurting staff, and I realized that she would be kicked out. When she was, I cried. I felt like a failure for not doing my job and helping this child.
As I look back, that class taught me a lot as all my classes do. I always learn from the kids every year. That was the class though that taught me patience, joy, sorrow, and to keep trying no matter what. A taught me all those things, and I wonder where she is and how she is. I only hope I taught her something. Maybe her ABC's or how to dance, or singing silly songs.