Today was our last day of school for the year. Teachers had the day to shut their rooms down, get checked out, and just enjoy the fact that we’ve survived a very difficult year.
I spend the year getting to know my team. The last three years, I’d work as an 8th grade with teachers that I started with in this district 20 years ago (that’s a story in itself). I’d been moved up to the middle school from 5th grade, and we grew into a very tight team. When my principal told me I’d be teaching sixth grade with three new grade partners, I stressed just a bit. There were a lot of what if questions that I had no answers for, and that’s not who I am. I like routine, period, and this was not in my routine!
As it turned out, all those “what if” turned out to be a big fat nothing. As it turns out, we gelled as a team right out of the gate. We had the “team mom”, the “team captain”, and the rest of us! 🙂 And then (lord), they wanted my cell number. Immediately, the “Awesome Sixth Grade Team” group chat popped up and was buzzing all the way through the school year. Our team thrived because of the personal communication, both face to face, and via our technology. And, there was a lot of laughter going on as well.
As we closed out our school year, one of our teammates informed us that she was leaving, moving back closer to her family. She’ll be teaching sixth grade in the school district where her kids go to school. Her drive will go from 40 minutes to 5. I cannot fault this decision because I had the chance to teach both of my own daughters in class and live 10 minutes from where I work. We’ve all ready interviewed and hired another math teacher, but nothing can replace what we had this year. My anxiety level this summer is considerably less and I’m going into summer about as relaxed as I’ve been in a long time!
So, thank you, Sixth Grade Team, for making this first year of all our sixth graders together a tremendous one! Next year, will be another great year because of who we have on our team. Different, but great!