As we began morning meeting on Monday suddenly one girl called out, “Ms. Moore! I heard you were going to teach First Grade!” I realized if the girls knew of this change we definitely needed to speak about it. As I shared in one of my last letters, I prefer that the girls not worry all summer about sectioning, and certainly not in our last few days of Kindergarten. We had an unplanned class meeting about changes.
I shared with the girls that I would indeed be teaching First Grade next year and I am sure some of them are wondering if I would be their teacher again. KM girls know that learning is a balance of what is good for the team and what each individual needs. We each have different strategies that we may or may not need to apply to be the best learner. I explained to the girls that ALL the teachers put a whole lot of thought into how to make the best class for each girl. Just like we worked hard to figure out how to make the best class of friends and make the best teacher fit for Kindergarten, we would do the same for First Grade. I told the girls that even though I may have been the perfect Kindergarten teacher for them, together we will figure out who is the best group of friends and teacher for them for First Grade! They will get a chance to be in class with KC girls and we have to make room for seven new First Grade friends!
Some families may not realize all of the thought and time that goes into sectioning. It is not a quick process by any means. We think deeply about the girls’ academic, physical, social, emotional, intellectual and behavioral strengths and areas of challenge. The teachers think about who are the best friends to be together in the classroom learning and who are work best together seeing each other on the playground. We strive to create balanced classes so that each has strong artists, writers, problem solvers, mathematicians and public speakers to mentor the rest of the class team. We think about where families live so that playdates may be more likely and close friendships could be fostered and we consider how personalities will enhance each other in the class and which girls will stretch one another’s thinking and resolve when placed together. We also take into consideration the teacher’s personal style, however SCH Lower School teachers are an amazing group of educators and the girls would blossom in any one of their classes.
By the end of the meeting we had come to the agreement that we all had a big job ahead of us to get ready for First Grade, even Ms. Moore! I told them to trust their teachers who love them to make the best class for them and to know that in the end they would be very, very happy. I even asked the former Pre-K girls to think back to last year and that some of them probably had hoped they may get Ms. Culbert, but look what a great year they had! The same would be true in First Grade. Sometimes you don’t feel like it can be any better than you have it now. I know that feeling well. Today was the day the new Kindergarten girls came to visit and normally I would be meeting with them. It is an exciting day but I am never really ready to start thinking about next year’s class when they come. It is unthinkable at this point to consider saying goodbye to the current girls. I am sure many of you are feeling that way too. But, rest assured we are all going to be fine! Change is hard but it is the only way we all can grow or learn.
The girls know they have changed so much from the beginning of the year and they have learned so much. I let them know that it was only fair that we had girls go to every First Grade so that they could teach other girls all that they now know about being a powerful strong learner, a gentle and forgiving friend, a problem solving peacemaker, a passionate and cooperative teammate and a thoughtful and mindful citizen. They have a lot to share with the world!
So, now the girls know not to be worried and hopefully you now know as well. We have had an unforgettable year together but it is not over yet! You won’t even believe what we have left to do together. I can’t wait to enjoy these last few days with your girls. They are a special group of ladies that I would love to keep with me for years and years and years but I can’t be that selfish. So before we move onward and upward, let’s just think about the next few days! Keep a look out for lots of news about what we have been working on and what we have to do the last few days of school.