Sunday, March 07, 2010
It was one of those early spring days, like Indian summer in reverse last Friday. After running out for lunch I came back to school and decided to open the window to get some of the early spring air into the classroom. I don't know what exactly it was that set us all off, the open window, the changing weather, the state assessments around the corner, or the fact that it was 3:30 on a Friday, but some extraordinary force came over the classroom.
I began to lose focus. I began to goof off. It spread.
I had taken off my flip-flops earlier and was walking around the room barefoot, which I do a lot when it gets nicer out. I was working with a group of 4 on some math they were still struggling with. It was one of the groups that can be a bit more challenging, and things often take longer. While I was waiting for them to finish writing what I had asked, I decided it would be a good idea to pick up a base 10 block with my toes.
The little girl who was sitting to my right thought that this was just the most hilarious thing she had ever seen. She got the giggles, the kind that started in her belly and seemed to bubble out of everywhere. She laughed, and laughed. Soon the other 3 students joined her, and then I. Not long after that most of the other students, who 5 minutes ago were working diligently, were looking at our group laughing along with us, even though they had no idea what they were laughing at.
This prompted me to think about the end of the school year, perhaps it is the weather, hinting towards spring, the end of yet another school year. This group of urchins and I have been together for two years, and I am beginning to feel very melancholy about the end of this era. If you can be friends with 24 eight and nine year olds, I am. If some of the people you look forward most to seeing are 4 feet tall, mine are. I love them, respect them and learn from them, probably more than they do from me.
And next fall, when Indian summer comes and a new wind is blowing through my classroom, I will miss them.