Monday, June 8, 2015

The Days are Long but the Years are Short.

On Colin's first day of Kindergarten my hope for him this year was simple. I prayed that he'd love going to school each day, that he'd feel a sense of belonging in the classroom, that he'd make friends and that he'd continue developing a curiosity about the world.

Don't get me wrong, we care about "academics" too, but ultimately we feel that one of the most important things you can gain from formal school is falling in love with the process of learning. Because if you love to learn, then you never stop. If you don't love to learn and are only striving for good grades or the finish line, then I think you miss out, really. Because with learning, there is no finish line.

In a town of many great schooling options, we ultimately chose our neighborhood school purposefully. We hope that our boys will get a great beginning to a lifetime of learning there. We also hope that they develop a sense of community and begin to understand what it means to be part of a community of people who care deeply about you and whom you care about too.

With the exception of a rough few days at the beginning of the year, Colin woke up every day excited to go to school. He was excited about everything he was learning/ experiencing and we'd hear all about it in great detail each night at the dinner table! He made great friends. He felt comfortable in the classroom and even referred to it as, "kind of like a family there".

At the end of the year school celebration, we brought our picnic blankets and sat in the field by the playground, surrounded by neighbors and friends. Our village.

(Photo credit: It's from the parent community group of our school)
On the last day of school, students and parents lined the hallways and clapped as the fifth graders walked out of there for the last time. It was really special to watch and quite a tear jerker even for this kindergarten mom! 

In short, we end this first year of school with such a grateful heart! Grateful for creative teachers that care so deeply and make learning fun, grateful for a child who loved school and fell more in love with the process of learning, grateful that there's an amazing school two minutes from our house, and for our community of neighbors and friends who make the experience all the more meaningful.

Last day pictures:

Owen was not impressed! He's all, "Ok I'll sit here, but I won't like it!"

Then I made them all sit in the same order as the first day of kindergarten picture.... because I'm crazy like that.

First Day

 Last Day

When I look at these pictures side by side I can't help but think of that saying, "The days are long but the years are short." 

So. True. 


Karen said...

Oh wow did they all ever grow and change! We had a lot of struggles this year making me so excited to have a summer with my sweet oldest girl, but I also love that we have an awesome school so close and a neighborhood full of friends!

Mary Reich said...

Hmmm, I typed up a comment, but it looks like Blogger ate it. I'll try to recreate it. Anyway... Just wanted to say I share your excitement about camping! We also bought a camper this spring. It is an older one but it fits our needs and budget perfectly. I was so excited about it I was known to sing "We bought a camper, we bought a camper!" for a couple of weeks after we bought it, accompanied by a little dance, until Allyson started rolling her eyes at me, haha. It is a dream come true for me to be able to take Allyson camping and create so many fun memories with her and Jesse. I'm especially thankful we found this camper and were able to make it happen even with our wedding this summer. I also understand where you are coming from with it being WAY more work as an adult! Meal planning and shopping, packing and unpacking the camper with food and clothes is a big job! Also, around here we need to make reservations at most campgrounds pretty far in advance to get a spot. But nothing makes my work week go by faster than having a weekend of camping to look forward to. We have had so much fun and it looks like you have too! Enjoy!!

Mary Reich (Chris' cousin)

Jessica said...

Mary thank you so much for your comment! Congrats on your camper! (And your wedding!!) I laughed out loud about singing, "We bought a camper, we bought a camper!" We are now trying to plan trips for next summer as here we have to make reservations way ahead of time too. I don't remember it being like that when we were kids. We should meet up sometime with our campers and our families :) That would be fun!