Today marked the last day of teaching my class this year. It’s always such a bittersweet day, as I’m ready for some time off but I’m going to miss all my little friends and their wonderful moms and dads. I love my job and my eyes were tearing up all day long. It didn’t help that I was up late last night watching the horrific news out of Moore, Oklahoma or that my daughter is having surgery tomorrow. I was an emotional basket case in need of keeping it together in front of 11 little angels.
As many of you know, I’m an Oklahoma University grad, my daughter currently attends OU, and the state is near and dear to my heart. I have many friends who live there and I was in Moore a mere three weeks ago. To say I’m heartbroken is an understatement. The fact that two elementary schools took direct hits from the twister is enough to twist the insides of even the strongest person.
Once again however, teachers came through. Much like we did in the aftermath of the Newtown, Connecticut tragedy, we are learning just how courageous and critical teachers were in Moore, Oklahoma. As my director said during our morning prayer today, teachers are the true heroes of society, not the athletes or movie stars who make millions of dollars. We have severe weather drills in our school once-a-month, but I can’t even imagine having to go through the real thing. I can only hope I would be as brave as those in Moore, Newtown, and in cities across America.
I am not a teacher by trade but I am proud to call myself a pre-school teacher nonetheless. As they say, teaching is the profession that teaches all other professions. Teachers literally shape the future and they literally save lives. In honor of those heroic teachers in Moore; for my sweet students who made my year special; and for all the good, dedicated, and tireless teachers out there, I’d like to close with a piece written by Donna Dargis that I give my students at the end of school each year. It’s called “If There Could Be One Thing.”
If there could be only one thing in life for me to teach you, I would teach you to:
Respect others so that you may find respect in yourself.
Learn the value of giving so that if ever there comes a time in your life when someone really needs you, you will give.
Act in a manner that you wish to be treated.
Be proud of yourself.
Laugh and smile as much as you can in order to bring joy into this world.
Have faith in others.
Stand tall and learn to depend on yourself.
Only take from this earth those things that you really need so there will be enough for others.
Don’t depend on money or material things for your happiness.
Fine peace and security within yourself.
To you my child, I hope I have taught all of these things, for they are love and I love you.