Today I had a ray of sunshine enter my room – a former teacher I mentored the past two years stopped in for a visit. With the budget cuts, Bethany was let go at the end of last year. Thankfully, she was hired in at a nearby corporation. Bethany is on maternity leave and brought her darling baby daughter to have lunch with a few of us. Her hug made the dreariness of the days slide off. I miss her.
Bethany came to our school a few years ago, her first teaching assignment. She was full of ambition, ideas, and excitement. She still is. Each day, her smile spread cheer everywhere. As literacy coach, I modeled writer’s workshop in her class and reflected with her on a regular basis.
One afternoon as we were planning, I mentioned a prior school I had taught at. Bethany perked at the name. “I went to school there,” she said. I smiled. “When?”
“I went there the first year the school opened. I was in kindergarten,” Bethany stated.
My mind raced and I think my face flushed. “Bethany, my first year at H. Elementary was when it first opened.”
We started to laugh. I was teaching (and got married that year) when she was attending. Bethany brought in her yearbook and yep, there she was a cute little kindergartener and there I was a younger looking me. We shared our story with her class and stated that we had an important job teaching them. “One of you may teach alongside us in the future.”