This last semester I was a teacher’s assistant for an elementary class. I’ve wanted to do this for SO LONG, and because my first period was empty I was finally able to. I went to the elementary building and found out that Kindergarten was wanting a TA, and immediately I signed up.
My first day came around, and when I walked into the room there wasn’t a single eye that wasn’t on me. They couldn’t believe that a high school kid was going to be in their class! They were very shy at first and didn’t talk much to me. At their “carpet time,” I introduced myself and they were allowed to ask questions. I got asked how many wiggly teeth I had and if I had any kids. Oh, and once they heard I was a swimmer they made sure to tell me alllllllll about all of their swim lessons and how much they love to swim too. SO cute! To them, I’m Miss Lucie, and I still haven’t gotten sick of being called that. It took them about a week to warm up to me, but once they did, they REALLY warmed up to me! They asked me a billion questions, made sure to show me their artwork, sat next to me, and made sure to say “Good morning Miss Lucie!” I wish I could’ve posted a picture of them so you can see what adorable goobers they are, but I felt like that wouldn’t be appropriate…
My jobs in the class weren’t all that exciting. I made a lot of books and copies (I even had dreams about making math copies!), helped with their morning worksheet, cleaned and wiped down everything they touched (it still amazes me how boogery and gross they can be), laminated, etc. I was able to go on a field trip with them to The Gilbert House, which was so dang fun. I knew going into this that I was going to have a blast working with those kids. What I didn’t know is that I would develop a love for them.
These kids have a piece of my heart now. Throughout these 4 months, I have grown to love each and every one of them, runny noses and all. It has been the biggest blessing to learn all of their little quirks and likes and dislikes and talents. I get to start out every morning seeing them and it makes me happier every day because of that. Their smiles and giggles are infectious, I can’t help but smile so big when I’m around them. I swear, they grew up right before my eyes too! From the time I came in to these past few weeks I have seen them learn so much and grow in knowledge so much. It’s pretty dang impressive to hear a 5-6 year old recite a memory verse to me perfectly. But, I think I have learned more than they have just by being in their lives for 45 minutes a day.
- They have taught me to smile and laugh more, and that life is a beautiful thing if you keep a curious mindset.
- They have taught me to be grateful for my education (sometimes a hard one for me). Their favorite thing to do is see how many words they can figure out from one sound (“ing”, “th”, “sh”, etc..) and they go crazy trying to figure out as many words as they can. **Side note: their standing record is 25. They remind me of that often. I want to be that excited and grateful to be learning! We have such a gift here in our country to be able to go to school.
- They have taught me to say “I love you” more. It’s the sweetest thing, they will write notes to each other and to their parents and all it says is “I Love You!!!” Yes, they do have a limited vocabulary, but still, it’s so dang sweet! I was written a note by a little boy and I have it in my binder, and this week I was given a dandelion by one of the little girls. I’m keeping them forever. They aren’t afraid to be affectionate, and I want to love people like they do.
- They make me want to be a mom someday. I adore these kids, and it has made me so excited to be a mom (in the far far far far future). They make me feel so happy and full inside just by helping them sound out words. I can’t imagine what being a mom feels like, and I can’t wait until I get to understand that feeling.
- They have taught me to love Christ more. During chapel, I am overwhelmed listening to the PreK-2nd graders sing and dance and go crazy during worship time. They love it! I’ve noticed in the high school that we don’t get excited for worship anymore. Over half of us don’t even sing. Even in churches we don’t get all that excited to worship. These kids have inspired me to always give my whole heart in worship, even if I look a little silly. And let me tell you, there is nothing on this earth more beautiful than listening to all of these little kids sing a worship song at the top of their lungs. Jesus without a doubt smiling even bigger than my smile while I listen to them.