Day 1: I felt like I had the flu and got very little sleep the night before. Once I got to school, though, I just fed off the energy of the students. I forget sometimes how much I enjoy being around you all. I’m constantly inspired and challenged by my interactions with students. I know that we dread that first day of school and dismiss it from our heads as it stalks nearer and nearer. That being said, once we’re there…. once the day has begun and that building is full of kids getting reacquainted, wide-eyed Sophomores getting their first taste of life in the big house, Seniors already starting to feel a little melancholy as they realize this is their final go-round, Juniors settling into their existence at FHS without realizing that next year it will be gone, teachers smiling at, shaking hands with, hugging old students while forgetting all their past transgressions, students realizing that the teacher wasn’t really that bad and recalling a once hated class with fondness… the energy is undeniable. I wish I could bottle the positive energy of that first day and uncork it come April or May.
Day 2: Felt much better today and had a good night’s rest going into the day. Already starting to see student personalities come through. Feel bad that I’m starting to group my students into certain stereotypes, but I feel the students are settling into their accustomed “roles” in educational institution. Would love to see students who proudly proclaim that they’re breaking out of their role. Maybe that shy girl used to be the quiet, reserved type, but now she’s going to get involved (ala Perks of Being a Wallflower). Maybe he used to be the class slacker who sat in the back and never contributed, but now he’s going to change his lot in life and give an honest effort. Maybe students have tried this in the past, and the institution forced them back down. All it takes is a cross word, a bad grade, a discipline referral, and that student goes back to their normal way of interacting with the school as a coping mechanism. When we dare and get slapped in the face, we run back to the familiar. Here’s the deal if you’re one of my students: go out on a limb, try something new, dare to breakout, I’ll do my best to appreciate the effort and meet you halfway.
Day 3: Friday. I think it’s brilliant that we start our first week on a Wednesday. 3 days to sort of get in the groove of things, but not get completely worn out, then we slip on into the weekend. That seemed to be the vibe at school today. Next week, though, things will be full on, and we’ll get our first real taste of the rest of the year.