Shout out to my teacher friends!!!

Wow!  It's hard to believe school will start next week for most of my friends.  And the fact that I will not be joining them has started to sink in...
I've started to reflect a lot on the last several years of my teaching career.  I love working with children; teaching them about community, caring for others, reaching out to others, coming together as a team.
It really doesn't seem possible that SIX years have passed since I found myself in a room full of fifth graders, rapping our new RESPECT lyrics to the tune of Vanilla Ice!
So many things have changed in education since then.  The daily demands and expectations of teachers continues to rise. We look for ways to "teach our children all about life" in a world where standards and testing has taken over.  We hope to inspire our children to love, to hope, to dream, to believe in themselves, to enjoy life and the beauty around them...yet we let tests determine their worth, their passing on to the next grade level, and ask them to rigorously work at home after school.
But as I continue to look back on my years, one thing I know has stayed the same, and that is this: "children continue to teach us what life is all about"; they work hard, they spend each day with sometimes 30 or more peers, and they get along!, they have hopes and dreams, and they find ways to enjoy what they love, even when there isn't a lot of time.  They trust us...with their secrets, to be there for them, to support them, to teach them, to lead them, and they look up to us.  THAT is what I will miss.
To my many teacher friends out there, I wish you a happy new year!  I hope it is filled with joy and laughter, a-ha moments, friendships, and more.  Thank you for all you do to "teach our children about life"!

Much love to you all~

"Freedom isn't free"

Enjoying this lovely weather!