8/14/09

It's the most wonderful time of the year....



Sniff. Sniff. Can you smell it? You know what I mean. That smell is here; the smell of new pencils, new books, new crayons and markers, the smell of new shoes, new clothes, and a new backpack and you know what that means. School is in the air! Perhaps the biggest sign that school is right around the corner is the buzz that is flying around the pool, in the supermarket and at your local fall sporting practices. Who will get the Best Teacher of All? Who will be the lucky kids to get in the Best Teacher of All’s class?

Remember on Mary Poppins, when Jane and Michael wrote a letter and asked for the perfect nanny? The father was stunned when Mary Poppins handed him the list that he had thrown into the fire. It went something like this:

(Start humming…) “If you want this choice position, have a cheery disposition; rosy cheeks, no warts; play games, all sorts. You must be kind, you must be witty, very sweet and very pretty; take us on outings, give us treats, sing songs, bring sweets.”

That’s what keeps going through my mind at this time of year. That super duper wish list. The wish list each parent and child has. Here’s what I think the wish list is for the perfect teacher. Wanted: teacher; must be sweet, even-tempered, hip, funny, pretty, smart, young, experienced and energetic. Must never yell, get mad, throw things or lose her temper. Must be very patient, wear stylish clothes, have a lovely laugh and smell like fresh baked cookies.


So, basically, that would count me out. (And, perhaps, everyone I know.)


While we teachers may not all be young or hip or very tall, there are some things we have in common. We are committed to our jobs and to your kids. These are some of the things we can promise you. We will get to know your child inside and out; we will learn about his pets, his siblings, his likes and dislikes and will always notice when he gets a hair cut. We will push him to be independent, self-sufficient, confident and responsible. We will help guide him when things don’t go his way and will laugh with him (and applaud) when they do. We will push him until he reaches the potential that we know he has, and we will be there when he falls, to pick him back up, dust him off and start him back up that hill. That’s our job, and that’s what we love to do.

Contrary to what my kindergarteners recommended to our student intern, we will not be teaching kickboxing, having cinema time every day; they cannot ride mechanical bulls in class, skateboard off the roof (with kneepads, of course) and we will not buy them happy meals for lunch once a week. (I gotta give them credit for trying, however.)

As a mom, I’ve learned that often the teachers who work with my child every day know more about what is a good match for him than I do. I have learned that it is important for me to keep my mouth shut on some occasions and it is equally important to voice my concerns at others. I have learned that a teacher that was not the best match for Mrs. Jones’ son (that darned Mrs. Jones—always so hard to keep up with), was the perfect teacher for my son.


Yeah, we teachers don’t all look alike. Some of us are tall, short, skinny, chunky, old, young, and black and white. However, we all love kids and want what is best for these young souls. So please; trust us, respect us and join us in making this the Best Year Ever for your child. One more thing - beware the buzz at the pool. Sometimes that bee will come right back and sting ya.


(This was something I did last summer. Hope you enjoyed it...and here's the Crystal Light update- Bitchy is kicking my ***)

78 comments:

buffalodick said...

I envy teachers- June through August... after that not so much! I'm glad a woman like you is teaching! Thank-you-from a parent that knows the value of a good school system, and the people who make it so- the teachers..

Sue (spbray) said...

So well said! I hope my daughter's kindergarten teacher is just like you!

Anna See said...

Thanks for this. I'm stressing about school, so this helps.

Sue said...

Our world needs more teachers like you!

Sabra said...

I have always admired teachers so much and was always tried to show my appreciation when my kids were in school. Thank you from a Mom who knows how important you and all teachers are.

TeacherMommy said...

Thank you! It's hard to be a teacher these days, with so much negative press directed toward us. And I completely agree with you that different students work better with different teachers--I just wish more people would realize neither the teachers nor the students are one-size-fits-all!

I'm not quite ready to head back, but I need to start gearing up for it. At least I'm not dreading it!

darsden said...

I love that staples commercial where the dad is skipping through the store buying the school supplies LOL

for a different kind of girl said...

Definitely enjoyed it. Any teacher willing to nurture my child's learning goals is a good teacher in my mind!

Hit 40 said...

Me bad...

My favorite part is the fighting folks do to get me as their kid's math teacher. I know a way to see my numbers before the kids get their schedules. I know how many are in each class. In just a few days... they will be full. Currently, the classes are a reasonable maybe 23 in each class. By the end of the week, they will all be the max of 30. It makes me feel loved :-)

Captain Dumbass said...

If you happen to change your curriculum please let me know, I'd like to enroll.

I love my son's K teacher. Some of the other parents don't like her, saying she's too hard on them, or she's mean, but I think that's BS. Not to mention easy to say when you're not the one locked in a small room with twenty five year olds. She keeps my son focussed when he can't and even though she's been teaching for 34 years now, you can tell she still loves it and the children.

Put your champion shirt on.

Keyona said...

I've always had faith in the teacher my daughter got. I have so much respect for teachers. Thank you againg for what you do and I'll be sure to avoid buzzing at all costs! :o)

Deb Thaxton said...

-->My son's still in daycare but I still have the urge to buy NEW school supplies just because they're so much fun.

www.WebSavyMom.com

*Akilah Sakai* said...

So far, I've liked all of my kid's teachers. (Knock on wood!) Be extra nice if they meet someone like you in their school career.

Stereos and Souffles said...

I had a lot of favorite teachers that I still think about to this day. I'm sure your students feel that way about you. You can tell as a student when your teacher has passion and really wants you to succeed. It makes a difference.

Jenn @ Juggling Life said...

I remember when my son was put (as a 4th grader) into a 4/5 combo. It was a perfect fit for him. I asked his 3rd grade teacher if she had known how great it would be when she put him there. She looked shocked. "I place all my students in the perfect place for them!"

Eluciq said...

Love this...TEACHERS ROCK!

Back to work on monday with kiddo's showing up the following week...woo-hoo!

WeaselMomma said...

This was cool. My perfect teacher is not defined by young or old, chunky or thin, black or white.
My perfect teacher is one that will be kind, but firm. Generous, but not weak. A perfect teacher will challenge my child every day and push them toward excellence without pushing them to a breakdown. A perfect teacher will demand a standard to be adhered to, but will not be a nazi. A teacher who will not accept work that is below standard, but has a reasonable standard. A teacher who is liked and respected by the students because it has been earned, but will be as tough with my children as I am. A trusted ear who adheres to common sense and not district policy. A teacher who is open to a relationship with my child and myself in order to work with my child as an individual.
I ask for a lot. Only the greatest of teachers can meet this standard and I think I would do cartwheels to have my child in your classroom.

Mrs. C. said...

Go, Teacher Lady, go! I should print this post on t-shirts and give one to every teacher at our school to wear for the next two weeks. Then when the parents started questioning about class placement, etc. the teacher could just point to the shirt...

Rose Broadway (Rosie) said...

Please, please don't leave out the male teachers! They have many of the same attributes, but may not be "pretty."....or anything feminine.
My family comes from a long line of dedicated male teachers, my son being one of them. For the last eight years he has taught third grade, and loves it.

Come fall he will be Principal of his elementary school. He and his beautiful wife have three young children, and I don't think I've ever seen such loving parents.

Teachers come in all sizes, colors, and sexes! Love your blog!

dizzblnd said...

You are definately a canidate for teacher of the year every year!

I missed this one, I am glad you found it. Very well written.

I think you DO fit

"Wanted: teacher; must be sweet, even-tempered, hip, funny, pretty, smart, young, experienced and energetic. Must never yell, get mad, throw things or lose her temper. Must be very patient, wear stylish clothes, have a lovely laugh and smell like fresh baked cookies."

Linda said...

This post should be required reading for ALL parents of school-age children. Well said!!

Not The Rockefellers said...

Well said!
Now go jump in the pool before school starts!

Peace -Rene

Sprite's Keeper said...

Actually, I find you to be practically perfect in every way.
xoxo

Pastor Sharon said...

Ah this was a great post! I"m thinking the kids who get to be in your class have that perfect teacher!

Your posts, your stories, your heart, your desire to help them grow. . . . have taught me a lot about who you are and I'm thinking you just might be the teacher who lands on the campus with the umbrella this year!

SSP said...

i remember all of my teachers. They all somehow had an impact on my life and the direction it took, but it was my first grade teacher, Mrs. Folds, who I credit for charting my course. The way they taught back then was different than now, I am sure, and if you were a bright and eager kid, you were pushed and encouraged to go beyond the rest of the class...and I wish she was still with me, kicking my ass and rapping my knuckles and reminding me that if I wanted to stay in the Blue Bird reading group (the GOOD readers), I needed to keep working hard.

Jeff D'Antonio said...

Wanted: teacher; must be sweet, even-tempered, hip, funny, pretty, smart, young, experienced and energetic. Must never yell, get mad, throw things or lose her temper. Must be very patient, wear stylish clothes, have a lovely laugh and smell like fresh baked cookies.



Hmmm...well, I'm not sweet, I'm not pretty, I'm not so young anymore, I sometimes throw things, I don't wear stylish clothes, and I definitely don't smell like fresh baked cookies....so I guess I'm out of a job.

Crap. Oh well, it was fun while it lasted.


Counting down the days here too, and looking forward to another great year :)

That one girl said...

Will you teach him to forever and ever love his mommy?

Ladybird World Mother said...

Dammit, that list rules me out too, although I could smell like a freshly baked cookie cos I could have one in my pocket... lovely post. Happy new year! xx

Under the Influence said...

Thank you for being a teacher! If I could give you a raise, I would.

KrisGC said...

I love your post, my daughter will be starting her career as a teacher this year. Everyone tells her she looks like the high schoolers she will be teaching. She was fortunate enough to have very positive, influential teachers as she went through school and I know that she will do the same for her students.

blognut said...

Some of my favorite people are teachers and I'm grateful as hell for every one of them.

As a parent, I understand that teaching is one of the most important professions out there.

As a person, I know that I could not do it because I don't usually like other people's kids in large doses, and I like their parents even less. :)

Bless you for being good at your job!

Comedy Goddess said...

Bon voyage!

Mrs. D said...

Wise words.

Lora said...

A-freakin'-men!

AirmanMom said...

Outstanding post!
Great commments!
~AM

SkylersDad said...

No mechanical bulls in class?

Crap! This is going to be the worst year ever!!

Cora said...

Ahhhhh. I love the smell of new pencils and crayons. Always have. Always will. :-)

CK Lunchbox said...

I would've traded all my Star Wars action figures to get you a teacher when I was a kid.

anymommy said...

Words to remember. Thank you. I'm going to need you to hold my virtual hand A LOT next year!!

Breathe said...

come on over and see my rant about school supplies.

Seriously. Map pencils. What the heck is a map pencil.

You rock. We'd all be fighting over you here.

pinklea said...

From another primary teacher out there: Thank you for writing and reposting that! It's all true, true, true!

jen said...

i agree wholeheartedly.
our district is going through some major transformations right now. it's hard. i agree. but ... sometimes ... change ... is better than consistency.
and teaching our children to roll with it and be flexible is one of the best things that you can teach them.

Brian Miller said...

its the most wonderful time of the year...actually it stinks b/c i have to send my playmates to school. but with teachers like you...i guess that just might be fine. hope you have a great weekend.

Sara said...

I'm so glad you have this gift, for I do not and am truly pleased to not have to fake it.

Single & Married said...

Well...I think all of us teachers are the best teachers for kids b/c who the hell is crazy enough to be a teacher in the first place? These people: hopelessly dedicated, obsessed individuals who care not only about your child right now but who they become in the future as the future is all theirs, that's who. This sentiment is at the heart of even the "meanest" teacher. Yes there are bad eggs, but very few. Most of us are out there rocking it day after day all the while knowing there isnt enough money to buy a house (here in CA where I am anyway) but it doesnt matter the kids keep me coming back year after year.
Even now, school started on Wed. & I am sad to be waking up, but so happy to see them.
Teachers Rule!
Keep on Infecting The Future!

Empress Bee (of the High Sea) said...

black and white oxford shoes with bobbi sox.

the smell of freshly sharpened pencils.

stiff crinolines under skirts.

sweater sets with a scarf tied at the neck.

three ring binder in denim blue.

an ink pen that took "real" ink.

smiles, bee
xoxoxoxoxoxoxoxo

and an apple! ps

PippaD said...

Every year I got one teacher for a subject that was the right teacher for me at that time. It is because of my teachers in the past that I am the me I am today.

That's my defense and I'm sticking to it!

Vodka Logic said...

I am not a teacher but I do appreciate them. I work nights so appreciate the school year even more. My kids are older but still need to be driven around.... now that school is starting soon-ish. I can come home and sleep... ahh zzzzzzzzzzz

Maggie said...

I think teachers need to be appreciated more. Down here we are lucky because teaching is seen like something very noble. Though there are many that think teachers chose to be teachers because it's an easy job and that we are lazy?? WTF?! I've heard a lot of people say that down here. They have no idea how hard we work even after school hours are over.

The Renaissance Chick said...

What a wonderful post! My Madisyn was tickled that she got the teacher she wanted! If all teachers had your attitudes, you would have made my job much easier!

To all those dedicated teachers out there, good luck and kick ass!

Malisa

Pseudonymous High School Teacher said...

Ah, I love the analogy to the letter for Mary Poppins.

Whenever a teen rubs me the wrong way, I try and remember there is a parent out there wanting me to see through the fog to the kid that his or her kid can be. Just like the hope I hold for my own challenging teen that I send off to other teachers.

The Mind of a Mom said...

My post today was in honor of all teachers out there!
Thank you for being you!

only a movie said...

Really, fresh baked cookies? Damn, I'm doing it all wrong.

I go back Sept. 1, and am getting really excited. I miss my students. It's going to be a good school year.

Thanks for writing this, VM.

Velma said...

So true, so true. We all have our "FANTASY LIST" but we forget that the choices we have are actually real people, not pick-to-order by-the-numbers teachers. I continue to be so impressed by the time and effort you put into crafting your classroom!

:)
V

Annie said...

Funny, I just thanked teachers tonight.

Midlife Jobhunter said...

I always admire how teacher can look forward to the new school year. Always come so quickly for me. Seems like school just got out. Here's cheers for a great year.

merlotmom said...

Didn't read this the first go-round. Loved it. Thankfully we don't start school for another month but I will keep what you said in mind. Thanks!

A Lawyer Mom's Musings said...

"While we teachers may not all be young or hip or very tall, there are some things we have in common. We are committed to our jobs and to your kids. . . . We will get to know your child inside and out; we will learn about his pets, his siblings, his likes and dislikes . . . . We will push him to be independent, self-sufficient, confident and responsible. We will help guide him . . .

Would you consider relocating to my district? Please? And right away? Because there was no "we" last year for us.

Best wishes this year to you and your lucky charges.

Yvette said...

I love what you wrote! It is so true. I worked in special education before I became a stay-at-home-mom. Having the support and trust from our parents was not only crucial, but it created a much better relationship with your student and their family. When my daughter's teacher reccommended we retain her after her first year of kindergarten (she is a Nov. baby and was soooo young) we trusted her instinct. She was right and following her guidance was the BEST thing we could have ever done for our daughter. It was wonderful to know her teacher was just as concerned with our daughter's best interests as we were.

Kathy said...

I ran into one of my son's teachers from last year. I affectionately refer to her as "snarky". She didn't acknowledge me, say hi, nothing, even after I smiled at her (which killed me). I wanted to trip her. Usually I love teachers. except her. Snarky beyotch.

anyway - I, too am singing the song about the most wonderful time of the year!!

Paige Lacey said...

Teachers are angels! Y'all work harder than can be believed, and your job is so, so important. Thank you for all that you do.

Mrs. K said...

I've always shut up and let my daughter's teacher take the lead- and I bring cupcakes or some treat at least once a month... :)

The Stiletto Mom said...

Personally, I've always thought teachers were a special breed of people. What exactly is that magical power you have in your hand that when you raise it, the entire room falls silent? Can you bottle it and sell it?

All my kids teachers have been great but I sure wish we could have had you for kindergarten....

Elenka said...

Believe it or not, I'm starting my 39th year teaching and I still love it. Everything you said is true about most of the teachers I know or knew. Making the right match, tho, may be the key and that's not always possible to figure out how to do.
We love your kids and respect them...it's the greatest job in the world. Never boring, that's for sure.
That said, I DON'T WANT SUMMER VACATION TO END!! (sigh)

EmmaK said...

oh darling I wish it was that time of year. I still have two weeks to go until the little um darlings go off to school.

Angie Ledbetter said...

Wahhhhhh, August makes me miss my little special needs classroom so much!

Hope your year is wonderful. I know the kids' will be.

PS Is your Twitter bird blind? Every time I try to DM you or say hey, he apparently doesn't alert you, because I KNOW you're following, right? :)

Minivan Mom said...

I love this post. LOVE. IT.

I started back at work this past Wednesday, and can't wait for the kids to come in another week. I dread the crippling amount of work for the next 10 months - the hours of grading and lesson planning at night and on weekends after 45 hours a week working at school. But I love my time in the classroom with the kids. It's the kids that make everything else okay.

Heidi said...

I hope my kids new teachers are as wonderful and caring as you. I sort of know my sons first grade teacher as she works at the local library too. She seems nice and is helpful at the library so hopefully T will do well in her class.

Anne said...

Is it tacky/inappropriate for me to actually make my parents read and sign off on this at open house?

As a mom of 3 girls AT MY SCHOOL it is hard to not get caught up in the BUZZ...and maybe the bee has even stung me once (or twice).

I too am eagerly awaiting my new little charges!

March on!

Dana's Brain said...

Sigh. Can't even believe we are heading for First Grade this year!!

KMcJoseph said...

Yay school!

Joanie M said...

Oh boy! A whole new year of funny stories!! YAY!!!!

Middle Aged Woman said...

Where I work, it's not about the BEST teacher. It's "Who will get the teacher who was so horrible to my Johnny last year? You know, the one who didn't accept any excuses? The one who demanded he complete his work ON TIME? That mean, mean person?"

Sue said...

That's awesome! You should post that in the paper!

SweetPeaSurry said...

I love that 'start of school' new smell!!!

Delish!

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Mary Freaking Poppins said...

This is perfect.

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