Posted in 2017, Classroom, Reflection, Slice of Life

#SOL17 What Was Missing

The day began with 40 of us standing on the sidewalk in the bright morning sunshine. Some of us were old friends, some acquaintances, some new faces. But every single one of us knew, as evidenced by the excited chatter and anxious looks on faces, that today was the beginning of something special. Today was our first day together on our journey to become a new family and open the doors of our brand new school.

Our principal stepped to the front of the crowd and explained what was in place and what will be coming. And then, just like that, the doors were opened and we walked into the building for the first time.

To say we were impressed would be an understatement. The smells of fresh paint and newly laid carpet filled the halls. Each classroom was perfect, filled with new, modern furniture and more storage than one can even dream of having. Bright colors filled the halls.

I stood in my new classroom, taking in all of the newness, all of the potential, and all of the excitement. I quickly snapped a few pictures before we moved on, something to hold onto until it’s time to begin moving my own things in.


We toured the whole building that day: the art room filled with light, the enormous gymnasium with its gleaming wood floors, the skeletal framework of a future playground.

But for every single one of the amenities and all of the promises the new school held, I couldn’t shake the feeling that something was missing.

That night, when I told my own kids that I had seen the new school, my son requested to see the pictures of where he will attend kindergarten this fall. I scrolled through my phone, showing them the rug and the tables and the bookshelves.

“But….that’s not a classroom!” my 5-year-old son protested, flipping through the pictures once again.

“Of course it is!” I replied. “See? There are bookshelves, and tables, and a rug…”

“But, Mommy,” he said, “How is it a classroom? It’s missing all the kids!”

And there it was: the truth I couldn’t quite put my finger on. Even with state-of-the art facilities and a staff of teachers who can’t wait to move in and set up our new classrooms, it just isn’t quite a school just yet.

A school doesn’t become a school until it is filled with children. And I can’t wait to be there in August when they arrive!


I’m excited to join other writers every Tuesday (and daily during the month of March) in 2017 to participate in the Slice of Life writing challenge through Two Writing Teachers. Read all about how you can Write. Share. Give. on their website here.

slice-of-life_individual

I’m excited to join other writers every Tuesday (and daily during the month of March) in 2017 to participate in the Slice of Life writing challenge through Two Writing Teachers. Read all about how you can Write. Share. Give. on their website here.

slice-of-life_individual

Posted in 2017, Slice of Life, Summer

#SOL17 Vacation Countdown

I awoke just a few minutes after 6:00 last Thursday morning, the second of our three cancelled school days due to flooding, to a whisper directly in my right ear, “Are we going to take my ba-jammies on vacation, Mommy?” I assured her that we would not forget to pack her pajamas.

On Friday, she asked where our dog will stay while we’re gone. I promised her he’ll have a great time relaxing with Grandma and Grandpa.

This morning her teachers asked me about vacation at drop-off, telling me that she’s been chattering nonstop about a pool and a beach. She confirmed this story tonight while I relayed it to my husband, adding that she’s also told all of her 3-year-old friends.

Maybe you shouldn’t have told her you’re going, my mom commented.

She’s going to drive us crazy, my husband warned.

True, I admitted to each of them. True.

But, even though the end of June is awfully far away, isn’t half the fun of vacation the time you get to spend looking forward to it?


I’m excited to join other writers every Tuesday (and daily during the month of March) in 2017 to participate in the Slice of Life writing challenge through Two Writing Teachers. Read all about how you can Write. Share. Give. on their website here.

slice-of-life_individual

Posted in 2017, Slice of Life

#SOL17 An Unexpected Decision

Today was a beautiful day. Sunny with light fluffy clouds that floated across a bright blue sky. A cool breeze and high temperatures that barely hit 70.

Anyone watching our kids run freely across the playground at recess would have been shocked by the calls and texts and emails that lit up our phones right before dismissal.

All of our schools will be closed tomorrow.

Torrential rains over the weekend have caused our rivers to overflow, rising high above flood stage and displacing thousands of people. Homes have been destroyed. Neighborhoods are cut off completely. Major interstates are closed. People have been told by authorities to choose a side of the river before going to bed tonight because they will be stuck there for the foreseeable future. Some of our students and many staff members live on the opposite side of the flooded river, leaving us too short on staff to operate.

As teachers, we learn to expect the unexpected. However, never in my fourteen years of teaching would I have ever predicted I would be spending a day at home in May, waiting for “historical and unprecedented” flood waters to recede.