Last day of school! Who would have guessed the mixed blessing that is? I am happy and sad all together. And really should be preparing for vacation, but need to pause for a moment first.
With another school year come to an end, I can’t help but reflect. There have been field trips, assemblies, tests, projects, praise, and the occasional admonishment to classes that just can’t always control the moment. Incredible growth and learning has filled the days, not to mention a few challenges along the way. Maturity comes with a price and it isn’t always pretty. Fidget spinners, frenemies, and tween angst aside though, it is all good at the end of the year.
And as much as summer vacation is wonderful, the piece that makes me sad is saying goodbye to teachers and school admin. Some will not be returning and others will step out of my children’s lives from the role they played this year. Both my girls were blessed with some mighty fine teachers and I know that isn’t always the case people are dealt. Our school will be losing several upstanding teachers who have often gone far beyond the minimum mandate of what it is to be a teacher. Know that I see what you do, even when it feels like nobody else notices. Whichever role you get to play moving forward, I hope the people you meet on your path know and appreciate all you do.
So an ode to the teachers who take one step beyond. Those who make it to school and work hard on the bond.
You work hard each day to learn from and to teach with children so varied; compliant, to those hard to reach.
The hours are long. The effort is great, from marking to coaching, know that I appreciate.
Please keep stepping up. Always offer the extra mile, because the ones you inspire most might be the ones most in need of a smile.
School is winding down. Our pool has been set up. And not surprisingly, Inspiration is nowhere to be seen.
From the last of the school lunches to the never-ending quest for what to make for dinner, I am struggling. What should I eat, what should I do, what should I write about; all questions I flounder to answer.
This happens every year. Tonight’s dinner is beer can chicken, as it’s too hot to cook indoors and whole chickens were shockingly inexpensive at the grocery store today. As I said to a man grabbing a cheap chicken beside me “they’re probably less than tasteless”, so imagination was in order. Hopefully the coffee porter I stuffed up the poor fowl’s butt will help. If not, there is always a trip to the ice cream company for dessert.
But what of my writing? I grasp at teacher gift memes, strawberry moon selfies, summer solstice themed ideas, and passing fluff (seeds from salicaceae trees) to inspire me. There is only a little better than a week left before school lets out and the girls are home for the summer, and I am jamming in as much writing as I can in that time period. Writing balanced between thank you teas, field trips, networking meetings, and various other goodbye type events. I am scheduling posts like mad to give me a little breathing room for when the kids are home, but I know I will be woefully absent from social media circles in the blink of an eye.
At the end of the day, all this busyness spells summer though. And I love it. I welcome the strawberry moon with open arms and strike another day off to bring us closer to summer break. I’m stressing and crazy busy, but looking forward to sleeping in, lying on the beach, summer adventures, and whatever comes our way.
Remembrance Day is an emotional celebration. In the days and weeks leading up to Remembrance Day, we look to the past and the people who have fought for our freedom. We are blessed to live in Canada, a nation that welcomes those from war-torn nations around the world. We send troops to their lands to do what we can to reestablish peace for countries torn apart by conflict. Our soldiers have marched the globe and not all of them have come back.
Today, I was privileged to attend a Remembrance Day service at my children’s school. Their gymnasium was filled with images of peace, hope and remembrance of the sacrifices our soldiers make. Both of my children were given the solemn task to lay wreaths for their classes on the cross erected for the service. Voices were raised in song and poem to commemorate the sacrifices. I am proud of all of the students who respectfully bowed their heads and added their two minutes of silence in the name of our freedom.
May they not have to make the same sacrifices. But if they choose to stand up and fight for our rights, beliefs and freedoms, may they do so with pride.
Thank you to all the brave soldiers who have fought in the name of Canada. The children at Woodland Heights saluted you today. And so do I.
Today is the first day of school at our house and across much of North America. Students headed back to teachers, pencils, books and all that comes with our education system. As much as there was a certain amount of nerves at play, we were all pretty excited for the new school year here. I kissed my children this morning and wished them well, as their new teachers called their names and led them away. Let their formal education resume once more!
Not all children are so lucky though. There are many across the world who do not have the good fortune to go to school. As much as literacy rates are fairly high in North America, there are still a shocking number of people who cannot read here and elsewhere in the world. The idea of not being able to read a book or even the myriad of signs that surround me on a daily basis is more than I can comprehend. Words are not only my business, but also my fondest pastime. I love reading!
While not everyone is as much of a book lover as me, the ability to read is incredibly important. It helps predict success in life and highlights the threat of poverty. As a woman, I am especially concerned with the higher illiteracy rates for my sisters across the globe. Knowing the lack of education often equates to a more difficult lot in life is frustrating. Why is this still happening? We need to do more for women, but progress doesn’t happen fast enough for those at risk.
On International Literacy Day, I celebrate school and the opportunities it brings for everyone. I always enjoyed school and my children love it too. I know the education they receive will take them far in life. And I pray that we can improve the lot of those who need a piece of that gift too. Let’s all do our part to stamp out global illiteracy and make the world a better, and more well-read place.