A Kindergarten teacher and Kindergarten Assistant’s (actually Para-Pro is the ‘fancy’ name given to those of us who are assistants) job is to not only help them achieve goals academically, but to help them socially….you know, get along with each other, share, be nice, and kind…in a word – “grow up.”
Kindergarten has changed so much, even in the eleven years that I have been an assistant. Gone are the half days. Gone are the naps. Yes, I did say naps! As the old saying goes, “ain’t nobody got time for that” anymore.
I love my little job as a Kindergarten Assistant…oops, “Para-Pro.” I love working with my teacher. And I love working in a place where we do things together, help each other and pray for each other. We are truly like a family. We are there for each other and when there is a need we take care of it for one another. I am blessed to work at such a place as this.
Some might would say our school is a “high-maintenance” school with out of reach expectations for our students and faculty. My answer to that is, we have always had and have high standards for our students and faculty. I believe we all do our job and do it well. We work together to see that each student is not just a number, but a child who is loved, cared for and taught with expectations of achieving at their very best potential. And not only their very best potential, but beyond that. We love our students.
On any given day you will probably hear these words coming out of my mouth to our little friends, “It’s our job to help you get ready for First Grade!” And it is.
I just absolutely love watching our little students come in at the first of the year and see them grow throughout the school year. They’ve grown in knowledge, and most of them grow socially. And sometimes this happens over the summer before they enter First Grade. (With the First Grade teachers praying that this happens)
They are truly sponges! What children learn in Kindergarten are life long traits. This may sound silly, but it’s so true. Getting along with others, being nice, and sharing. Knowing and realizing you are not the center of the universe.
Every once in a while, you’ll have this one particular little student that you’re thinking, “It’s their world and we just happen to be living in it!”
What appears to be cute at times when you are five years old, is not so cute when you are a grown up. Jesus has some wonderful advice for us on this matter. He knows that we as grown ups can act like we are five year olds at times. We want our way. We don’t want to share. And sometimes, we’re not so kind to others. And yes, it’s “our world and everyone else just happens to be living in it.”Does this ever sound like you? Because, (and I hate to even admit this), it sounds like me at times.
“In a word, what I’m saying is, Grow up. You’re kingdom subjects. Now live like it. Live out your God-created identity. Live generously and graciously toward others, the way God lives toward you.” Matthew 5:48 MSG