The first day of school in the early years brings an anxiety of its own. Parents dread the crying child (although some look forward to the validation), teachers anticipate the crying, & some children cling to their parents. The children are young, not yet accustomed to the idea of school. They are also not yet comfortable with the idea of being dropped off at school. They need to get accustomed to the routine which takes time.
In my more than sixteen year career as an educator; I’ve come across many different types of parents. This post highlights one of them.
Setting: First Day of Preschool
A mom came in with her son. The son was starting to cry although I could tell he really was trying not to cry. I got the feeling he had been prepped for this moment that showed in his demeanor. The mom called in the father who came into my class then the mom left.
The son was sitting on the carpet with a few classmates. The father took off his shoes then joined the children on the rug. (this is a rare occurrence) I was impressed with this gesture. Nothing about the father was threatening. He had a strong yet, gentile presence. He spoke to his son in the most manly & gentle fashion, that I had ever witnessed. The son wiped the tears as soon as they fell in an effort to live up to his father’s expectations. The son was quietly assured. I didn’t hear any of the father’s words yet, I enjoyed the interaction between father & son. The father instructed the son to introduce himself to new classmates and modeled proper hand-shaking technique.
My heart melted with this exchange. The Father calmly left. He stood at my window about 20 minutes later glanced at me with a simple thumbs up sign. I gave him a thumbs up in return, at this point my student who is his son was at ease. The son never knew the father was standing in our class window.
I’ve taught school long enough to notice things in both parents & children. I can easily pick up on parental energy. My educated guess would be that this child comes from a supportive household in which both parents are “actively involved” with efforts to ensure educational success. This student is mild mannered and generally well-behaved. Like his parents he carries a quiet confidence. The foundation at home plays a major role in the “in school behavior”. The actions of this mother and father were commendable. You see, the mother calmly & quietly called the dad & my guess is the son had no glue the dad was even on the way.
I would say, I have never been more impressed with a Father in my career. I know that we are all not as fortunate as the child mentioned in this post but, we can all learn from it.
Thanks for Reading,