Squirming Worms

***

You taught me how to read,
you taught me how to write,
you taught me how to make poems with rymes at every sight,
you taught me how to multiply as hard as it sounded,
how easy it was I really was astounded,
simple machines were fun to study, that’s why you’re my budy.
I don’t want to leave you with those squirming worms, please loop with me Ms, and teach me for four more terms!

***

And so another school year ends.

I can not believe how much I loved teaching gifted third graders this year. I can’t believe how quickly the school year went. My administrative team was excellent. I got along with my coworkers (although none became true friends like Fairy Godmother did), and I am actually looking forward to coming back next year.

I know that gifted education is truly where I belong as a teacher.

And just as this school year came to an end, one of my absolute favorite students from my very first year of teaching contacted me to see how I was doing. When I got her in fifth grade, she knew French but no English. I had absolutely no idea what to do with her. I set her up with various websites to help her with her English. I found a French-English picture dictionary in the school library and during independent reading time she’d buddy up with a student and they would practice vocabulary together. She’d teach them the French words, and they’d teach her the English words.

I gave her a copy of The Diary of Anne Frank in French because we were going to do a big unit on WWII. She read the book over winter break, came back to school, and devoured every single book in the library about Anne Frank. Two years after I had her, the Center for Puppetry Arts in Atlanta held a show about Anne Frank, and I took her to it.

I have always wondered what happened to her. Unlike some other students who have kept up loose contact, once I left Atlanta, I lost all contact with her.

Well, she just graduated, and she’ll be going to college in the fall.

When I first started teaching, I told myself I’d give it five years. If I hated it after five years, I could leave and go into law. I wanted to become a high-powered defense attorney. Sometimes I am amazed that I’ve been doing this for eight years.