Monday, August 14, 2006

Second Grade

My son Zachary started second grade today. I can't help comparing what he is like today with what I remember being way back yonder and the differences blow me away. Zach or Z-Man as I like to call him is so much more personable and friendly than I was at his age. He is sophisticated and cool and I was shy and dorky. Meeting new people and making them friends does not phase him in the least. I can honestly say that people scared the hell out of me and to a degree still do (shhhhh don't tell okay).

I barely remember starting second grade at Osuna Elementary but do have fond memories of a teacher that pulled this shy kid out of his shell. Her name was Mrs. Gillcrest and up to that point I thought she was the most beautiful woman I had ever seen. She had a smile and a warmth about her that made you feel like you were the only kid in the room. I still remember her asking me why someone with such a great smile hid it so often. She had me at hello!

Though I didn't know what a relater was way back when, I honestly believe she was one. She had a special talent to take any kid, good or bad, and get them excited about learning; learning whatever it was she was teaching. I honestly believe she was one of the first teachers to stoke my interest in reading as she always made me equate what I read to my own life experience which was way cool. I loved having her as a second grade teacher because she so enjoy being my second grade teacher and it showed and it was felt.

My hope for Z-Man for this next school year is he still continues to love learning and keeps making friends. He drinks up math and science like nobody's business and the teachers he has had up to this point have all remarked about how smart he is. Let me assure you he gets that from his mother...thank God for that!

Walking Zach to school today allowed me to remember back to what it was like on that first day of school. The way a new class smelled. The new pencil box and backpack that you finally got to use. The new pencils with which our little hands would finally get to sharpen (on our own!). The newness of it all.

It was fun this morning. A morning that I know I will remember for the rest of my life. I know somehow some way he seemed to know I was enjoying his first day of school as much as he was.

So what is your favorite memory of second grade?

And to Mrs. Gillcrest....where ever you are! Thank you!

Ripple On My Friends!

Steve Harper


Carlon Haas said...

Good for Zach. Our Hannah made it past the first day. So good.

Donna Karlin said...

What was my best memory of Grade 2? I'm not sure I can remember that far back : ) but I do have all sorts of memories that come to mind that I share with one of my oldest and dearest friends who moved here about 25 years ago. Yesterday when I was in my 'home town' of Montreal I drove past my grade school and high school and the memories were fantastic! And as there was a friend from high school in the car with me, the stories came fast and furious.

I can, however tell you that every year of my son's schooling I remember like it was yesterday. What I did was keep a brown manilla envelope for every year with records of special moments in them. I kept envelopes and not boxes so I wouldn't collect enough stuff to need a separate building to store it all in!

About a month ago, when my son moved back from England (finished a second Master's Degree) I started going through the envelopes with him...old report cards, awards, special moments from science fairs etc and we were reminiscing, have no idea. They've been put away again for me to give to his kids when he has them.

Those mental snapshots will stay with me forever so enjoy every moment because you blink and they're all grown up!