Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Morning Surprises

As an instructional coach, one of my daily duties is to greet children when they arrive in school. As I stand in the entryway I say hello to each child, stating their names if possible. I judge this personal greeting sets the tone for the day for these kindergarten and first grade students and helps to create a sense of community in our building. I love this duty so much that I consider it a privilege and not a duty to welcome the children each and every day.  It is here that I get to discover all of the wonderful happenings in the student's lives: birthdays, new shoes, funny hats, and the joy of the appearance of the first wiggly tooth.  Somedays I am also privy to the sad news of the broken arm that ends the soccer season or the loss of the beloved family pet. 
Last week I heard a first when a student proudly proclaimed that her dad became a US citizen the day before. The child was beaming from ear to ear and the pride was evident in her voice. Before I could respond with a wow, she hopped off down the hall to presumably share the happy news with her classroom teacher.
I read many articles about the importance of greeting our students at the door each morning, but when I dwell of all of these experiences I question who benefits the most - the students or me?

Thank you to The Two Writing Teachers for their Tuesday Slice of Life blogging community.


  1. I used to stand outside my classroom door to greet my middle schoolers at the beginning of each period. Our handshakes evolved into elbow bumps (when we had a particularly nasty flu season one year). I still stand at the door for elbow bumps and student names when I substitute teach! I like making eye contact with each student the first order of the day.

  2. What a great way to connect to students. As a coach myself, I sometimes feel disconnected from the students. This is a nice way to stay in touch with kids.

  3. It is amazing how much they share. You might not be their classroom teacher, but you are a constant for them through all their years at your school.

  4. Love everything about this -- I think you both benefit more because you see it as a privilege and joy rather than a duty. I think most things in life benefit everyone more when we have this stance towards our "duties." I loved the snippets you shared - I could hear, see, and feel each moment. I wish every school did this - important message to start the day.