"I liked your letter!"
"Oh, I got a postcard from you!"
"That place was pretty! Where is it?"
"Recibí tu carta y quería responder, pero no pude encontrar su dirección..."
"Thank you for the letter!"
"My parents were wondering which one you were, and I explained to them..."
Last Wednesday, on the first day of school, my students came bouncing into my classroom with huge smiles and sparkling eyes. One even pulled his postcard out of his binder, waving it as he found a seat. Class after class, amidst a sea of hugs, excited chatter, and smiles both familiar and new, postcards (which my students mostly called "letters") came up again and again.
You see, a few weeks earlier on my trip to Hocking Hills, I perplexed the gift shop cashier by buying a huge stack of postcards to send to my students. When I used to teach elementary school, I knew teachers who sent their new classes postcards or letters over the summer, and I just loved the idea.
|Just before mailing!|
|I don't even remember what we did in class, and I bet she doesn't either. |
But months later, she remembered how she felt in my classroom.
As I thought, worried, and wondered about my students' summer experiences, the memory of those elementary teachers who sent notes over the summer came drifting back, and I knew I had to try it. At the very least, I hoped my students would have something positive in their minds when they thought about me and my class. I hoped the new students would feel a little less scared, and that my students from last year would feel special that I thought of them over the summer.
Last Wednesday, I was rewarded with so many more smiles, squeals, and hugs than I had dared to dream of. A few dollars and a few hours of my summer for pure DELIGHT on the first day? Definitely worth it.
It's going to be a great year!