Tuesday, May 31, 2016

End of the Year Letter...

One hundred seventy-six days.  When I say it that way...it really doesn't seem like very much time.  So how is it that it only took only a fraction of that time for me to fall in love with your child?  

As I reflect upon this past year, there are things that I want to make sure you know.

I hope you know that...I love each one of them.  More than any other class that I have ever taught, I am PROUD, I mean downright PROUD, of each of your children.  We've had a year of great days, but we've also had a year of days where we lifted each other up through our own tears.  Literally.  But this is why I am so proud of your child.  It is true they grew in stature.  And it is true they learned "second grade" academics.  But it is true also that they learned a lot about life...and that is why I am so proud of them.

We faced days that made us want to stay home and snuggle with Mom.  But we persevered and snuggled tight with our family here.  We faced days that scared us silly.  But we persevered and laughed ourselves silly with our family here.  We faced days that make most adults shrink back in fear.  But we persevered and stood tall with our family here.  We became smarter, sure.  Of course we became taller, but we also became strong little people.

I hope you know that...you not only helped your child grow this year, but you helped this teacher grow this year!  I am so appreciative of you!  Yes, YOU, the parent!  Did you have any idea that when your child was placed in my class you were getting the "crazy" teacher?  ;)  You got the teacher that likes to step outside her comfort zone and try new things.  You got the teacher that likes to toss out the textbooks and give a fresh approach a try.  You got the teacher that scours Twitter and Facebook and blogs searching for ideas I might not have ever thought of.  You got the teacher that decided homework needed a makeover and gave the new "Knowledge Quest" challenges a try.  And you were so supportive!  You never once questioned me.  You never once complained.  You somehow "got" my personality and my teaching style and you supported it!

I hope you know that...you have done a great job raising your children.  If you have not already heard, I will be moving up to the middle school next year.  I am very excited, but also quite nervous.  My teaching career began in a fifth grade classroom and I loved it, but I have never taught a true "middle school" grade.  Next year will be a year of new adventures for me also.  Today, I had your children "grade" me on a report card.  Many of the comments were very sweet, but this one hit me like a ton a bricks.  Is this child living inside my head?!?!  No...she is simply being her own sweet, "free-spirited" self and encouraging me with the love that YOU, the parents, have instilled in her.  Great job to you all!

One hundred seventy-six days.  I have loved each one of them!  Thank you for a GREAT year and for sharing your children with me!  They're going to be AWESOME third graders!

Check out this collaborative ABC book we created showing what we've learned this year using Google Slides.