Nearly a month into the new school year, back-to-school anxieties have passed.
Class loads have been adjusted and teacher assignments finalized.
Names on waiting lists for special programs have been selected.
Back-to-school nights have come and gone.
Every year, I think about the mix of anticipation and trepidation felt by so many parents as their children begin the school year, whether the children are preschoolers or college freshmen.
This year, I reached out to a few of my teacher friends to find out how they were feeling.
What new challenges or changes did they anticipate? What had them excited or nervous? What advice might they offer parents?
Not surprisingly, the responses I received ranged from relational topics (teacher-parent, teacher-student, teacher-administrator) to curriculum, and from excited to worried or even — as with many parents at the end of summer — a little sad.
Longtime kindergarten teacher Marilyn Hande was the first to respond to my email.
A few years into teaching the transitional-kindergarten class for children who turn 5 years old in the fall, Hande shared her mix of feelings.
“I am feeling excited and a little overwhelmed all at the same time,” she wrote, excited to meet her new students and a little overwhelmed as she unpacked her classroom.
After representing the district in helping develop the state’s transitional-kindergarten learning modules for early education, she was excited to put them to use. She was also happy to share some advice with parents of young children.
“Part of our transitional-kindergarten day is to have a sharing time,… and the best stories…
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