First, a disclaimer: this post is a day late--going up on January 31, but concerning the gratitude I felt on January 30. The reason for the omission yesterday was a schedule packed a little too full of work and fun to squeeze in time at the keyboard.
That said, Friday I felt grateful for the help of my two new student teachers, Amanda and Kendall. They are, first of all, smart. They seem to be entering the field of education because it is their calling, not the best choice among too few choices.
They come with experience. Amanda has worked as a scout leader and for a bookstore in the children's department. Kendall has taught outdoor education in Yosemite and at the Marin County Outdoor Education Program at Walker Creek. Student teachers who've spent considerable time in the company of school age children have a good and useful head start.
They are enthusiastic and energetic. We worked yesterday to put up a word wall for the kindergartners to refer to when writing their own stories. This was work that would have been a drudge for me to do alone. Instead, with the assistance and company of two young and sparkly women I did the task with pleasure.
Finally, they're young, about my daughter's age, years younger than the students I first taught at the beginning of my career. There's no word I know in English to describe the pleasure of passing your life's work into the capable hands of others whom you know will carry on the noble work (equanimity mixed with delight?) but wordless pleasures can leave you speechless and with a little more spring in your step.
There. I knew it would take about twenty minutes to express the gratitude I felt on Friday, time that wasn't available then. I'll post again later today for January 31.