The end of the school year stumbled upon me in an unexpected way.
Typically, I would have my report cards completed and printed by now. I would have more materials packed up, more curriculum inventoried, more things off the walls.
Historically, I would have a large calendar with many days crossed off. I would be overly aware once the single digit days began and those that are remaining; this isn’t done because I am over-anxious to run from my students, but those x marks used to represent days, hours, until I could spend most of my time with my son.
This year, the closing feels different.
This isn’t the end of just another year, it is also the beginning of full-time homeschooling. It feels strange that I will return in the fall as a “Friday only” teacher. Does this shake my identity? A little.
I will still be a full-time teacher, but to my own.
Fourteen of my students from this year’s class, spent two Septembers with me. Our relationship is naturally closer, the kids are tighter. This will be our second last day of school together.
It isn’t as if I’m not used to saying goodbye in June. Most of my twenty some years were spent educating young learners for one year and then sending them on to others.
That’s just what we do.
I shouldn’t have been surprised when some asked which class we would be in next year. They were confused, almost mad at me, when I explained that they were all moving to new classrooms, new teachers, new learning.
Today, I was looking around the room at my students, really looking, I saw their progress and maturity in a way that I didn’t notice yesterday.
Those that are now readers
Those that are now writers
Those that are now thinkers
Next Wednesday, staff members will all wave as the buses leave the parking lot filled with kids. The faces are usually smiling and cheering, waving when they finally find their teacher. There are always a few that are overwhelmed with emotion and tears flow as we try to coax a smile out of them before the engines start.
Five days before things change. This chapter is closing.