Each and every time I go into a classroom filled with small children and spend more than a few moments there I come away with renewed gratitude and respect for those among us, elementary school teachers I mean, who have the intestinal fortitude and whatever other strength of character it takes to spend days with young children, in sets of 20, helping them grow and learn.
Children are loud! They don’t always have complete control of their body fluids! And they need to learn all sorts of things, from the difference between to, two and too, to how to listen to a peer talking while they, too, have something to say (many adults, by the way, never master either of these two skills).
In any case, my oldest child was lucky enough to have Karlyn Taylor, who was profiled two weeks back in the Alameda Journal. What I found most remarkable about Mrs. Taylor (aside from the fact that she was teaching in the classroom in which she herself attended kindergarten decades back) was that she created, in a classroom of high readers and low readers, socially gifted and socially awkward, native English speakers and ESL students, the warmest and friendliest social environment. Those children cared for one another, and learned how to show it. As my daughter said, “I love Mrs. Taylor.” So happy retirement Mrs. T, and thanks for all your love.