We did it! Woohoo! We made it to summer. Yes, certain days crawled by, but it seems like just yesterday that we were learning each other's names. Then we blinked and another year was in the books. I usually won't admit it, but a part of me gets a little emotional when I say goodbye and ship you off to the next grade, so I wanted to take a moment to reflect on our time together. Because you matter.
Thank you for filling my desks each day and making my room full of life and laughter. Thank you for making me smile, and saying just the perfect thing to bring my spirits up on a bad day. Thank you for sharing your life with me through writing and conversation. Thanks for keeping me up on the modern lingo and newest YouTube videos. You keep me young. You give my job meaning.
I'm sorry that there were times I was too overwhelmed and exhausted to chat with you. I'm sorry that there were times when I got frustrated, or lost my patience after stretching it as far as I could. But mostly, I'm sorry that we ran out of time. I'm sorry that this is our last day together, and I'm even more sorry that I won't be seeing any of you again next year. At least not regularly.
Truth be told, I'm going to miss you all quite a bit. I'll miss your jokes and your smiling faces. I'll miss the funny things you say that crack me up. But mainly, I'll just miss you. Even you, class clowns. You know who you are. Yep, I'll miss you too. You are much more to me than your actions.
I hope you learned something from my class. I hope you learned to like at least one book. I hope you feel more comfortable with writing. I hope that speaking in front of a large group isn't quite so scary now. But most of all, I hope that you saw my passion- my passion for teaching, my passion for kids like you, and my passion for life. It is my hope that I showed you that you matter and that you have potential and purpose in life. Because you do. Trust me, you do. I hope I taught you to laugh at yourself and to never be too busy to have fun.
You're off now to bigger and better things. In a few short years, you'll say goodbye to high school and hello to the rest of your life. I am so excited to see all the amazing things that you'll do, and the amazing places you'll go. Wherever life takes you, I hope you remember to live fully and enjoy every second of the moment you're in. Because trust me, they go oh so fast. Too fast. Then one day you wake up and you're my age and you wonder where the last ten years of your life have run off to.
So enjoy it, dear students. Enjoy the time you have here. Make the most of it. Don't wish it away. Laugh daily. Love each other well. Sacrifice for others. And never give up on your dreams. Because if you think you're too cool for something fun or you think that you're better than someone else, you're really just hurting yourself. You're stealing your own joy before you even get to experience it. Be a kid. Live a life of fun and adventure. Support and build up; don't tear down and destroy.
For now, it's time to say goodbye. Come back and see me. You know where I'll be. I promise I won't forget you, and I hope you don't forget me either. I can't tell you how much joy it brings us teachers to have a student come back and say hi, or tell us how they're doing. Because you will forever be a part of our story here. Now go write your own.
Kelsie (aka Mrs. K)