The Other Side Of The Desk

I approached the desk with a lot of hesitation. A nervous smile was planted on my face. Sitting down, the tiny desk didn’t faze me. That’s something I was very familiar with.  What I was not used to was the side I was sitting on.

Today, I was sitting on the other side of the desk.

For 16 years I have led parent teacher conferences as I have spoken to parents about their amazing elementary school children. We have talked about their needs, their goals, and all things personal. Before kids, I had never given much thought to what they must be thinking as they talk about their loved ones. Believe me when I say I was a bit anxious. Okay…VERY anxious.

I looked up and waited for my son’s kindergarten teacher to lead this one.

This was completely new territory for me. In fact, this was the first time I was even meeting this person who had spent at least 3 months with my child in his first year of school.

She began to talk. This was the warm up part to get me to relax. I was familiar with this one. What I wasn’t expecting was her congratulating me on my new baby that my son had told her I had. His sister is almost 3 so this was news to me. We all had a good laugh and then it was time to get down to the real stuff…life in kindergarten.

As his teacher began to speak, I realized how much she knew my child. She was able to describe him perfectly. Her eyes lit up when she spoke about how sweet and respectful always is. When she described areas he needed to work on, she did it with sensitivity and confidence. I felt like we were a team and from any side of the desk, we know how important that is.

My son talks about his teacher and her assistant all of the time. He comes home happy and he thinks they are a lot of fun. I knew how lucky we are even before I walked in.

While she was talking, I was able to look around an amazing room where it was so obvious how hard the class works in there based on all of their projects displayed.  My eyes started to fill with tears. In those moments, it came full circle when a parent confided in me how relieved they are when the child says school is fun. It is the key to being enthusiastic about learning and having self-confidence.

I also completely related to those parents who make excuses about not being able to practice everything. Oops. Must do better with practicing sight words.

I walked out of that conference feeling good about my child and his amazing teachers who have just started his education journey.

When I got home, I asked about him telling everyone I had a baby. He looked at me, smiled REALLY BIG and said, “KIDDING”.

Kids. Gotta love them.

Tomorrow, I am going back to my side of the desk.

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Have you thanked a teacher lately? I am so grateful for many of my own teachers throughout life. I am lucky to have worked with some of the most amazing teachers as well. The best part of a teaching career? Being a part of a child’s life. Thank you so much for reading day 29 of my November daily blogging challenge from Blogher.com. One more day!!! Thank you also for following me at @40 Wishes and Counting

Love, Stacey

Comments

  1. Mary O'Sullivan says

    Stacey, You know how I love your columns!! My First Grade told all the parents that he would believe half of what we told her if they believed only half of what we told them!! So true!!

  2. says

    Haha! My parents were teachers, & then my dad went on to be an inspector of schools – my teachers were terrified of seeing my parents on parents’ evening! The memory that has always stuck was my dad speaking to my physics teacher at the end of the year when I was 15. My teacher was talking about the end of year exams and explaining that, though my physics mark was much lower than my biology and chemistry marks, it was still one of the best marks. He said that everyone scored low on the physics and the test was actually very unfair, as we had not been taught most of what was on it. My dad asked him who wrote the test, and he replied that he did. My dad looked at him in silence and then just got up and walked away.

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