Another First Day of School

The days are starting to get cooler, but it’s not winter yet.

The days are inching towards September. August is over and done with.

It’s time for a new school year, but nothing will be the same.

My grade level team was in the school building this weekend, but I stayed home to read, write and rest. The work is never done, but we always think a few more hours will get us “ready” for the first day of school. I don’t blame my teammates; in years past I would be right there with them.

This will be my 35th first day of school, but I was on medical leave all of last year, so does that make it my 34th? Hmm.

But nothing in this first day of school will be the same. And, we’ve all accepted that fact, but we’re not happy.

I’m so tired of thinking about this pandemic and all it’s done to our lives, but still we push through. “We’re wired to do hard things,” someone famously said, but no one said it would be easy.

The uncertainty of what may happen is making this new school year feel surreal like we’re all waiting for something to go wrong and then we can say, “Told you so!” That would not be our best moment, but we are all struggling to make this time be OK. Is that even possible?

So, all 3 teacher work days are in the book. Today some students arrived, but not all students. The rest will come tomorrow and some have opted for the online learning hub.

My classroom was bare, sterile someone called it, except for 22 physically distanced student desks, but not really. How can that really happen in a school? The desks are in rows facing the white board or what would be the front of the room. Kids stay in their seats and the teacher is at the front of the room.

I know teachers will make this work. We always do. No matter what is thrown at us teachers hunker down and figure it out.

Now that students have arrived and my 35th (or 34th) first day of school is in the books, it will be easier to move forward because despite what some are saying, teachers want to teach their students in a classroom, but without feeling fearful for their safety.

Next Tuesday will offer another story to tell.

Cross posted to the Two Writing Teachers Slice of Life Story Challenge

8 thoughts on “Another First Day of School

  1. I really love the [comma, but] structure you use here. I feel you working on being positive, but it’s hard. The forced smile, the unyielding commitment that keeps you moving . . . it’s all here. I feel it. Well-written and so moving. I feel like I’m right there with you. Our kids show up next week to a, um… hopefully welcoming school. Good luck, and I’ll look forward to next week’s story . . .

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you for your encouraging words, Lanny. Yes, being positive right now is hard but it’s all we’ve got under the circumstances. I was speaking to a friend tonight and she helped me feel less anxious and sad about the place we’re in right now. BTW, The “comma, but” was a structure I read in someone’s writing recently, but I can’t remember whose writing it was! I liked it when I saw it and wanted to try it out for myself. And, next week’s story is going to be completely different, I think!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I am glad to hear you survived the first day. I start back in person next week. I think it is my 37th first day, but I’m not sure; I guess I will have to check the pay scale to clarify. I am looking forward to reading your Tuesday stories!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Terje says:

    Even in your wildest nightmares about teaching you couldn’t have seen that your 35th year would start in a situation like this. I hope that the year will have more normal than the current time lets us believe now.

    Liked by 1 person

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