I was invited to the Stearne Elementary school (map)for career day. I had been over there for the story on the Faithfully Fresh produce market a few weeks ago. My first thought was do I really want to do this. But then I thought it would be an interesting experience for me and maybe for the kids.
So Friday morning found me at Stearne for a continental breakfast before starting out on my list 9 classrooms to visit. There were 15 other volunteers for this special event with a wide range of occupations among them: insurance agent, computer analyst, tax analyst, director of IT, correctional officer, account executive, college professor, business owner, dentist, pharmacology, museum guide, veterinarian technician, police officer and immigration services officer.
I have been in a few elementary schools over the years and Stearne was quite similar to the rest. The kids were aware that there were “guests” in school and were obviously looking out for us. I took my class assignment sheet and started to trek around the halls. Fortunately I did not have far to go.
- First class was room 103 where Mrs. Wrigley held forth with a group of kindergartners. I was happy to make this my first stop although I had no idea what I was going to say about blogging to 5 years olds. I chit chatted a bit and then asked everyone what they wanted to be when they grew up. They were a nice group and most talked the helper occupations like policeman, doctor etc.
- Next I went to see Ms. Kaufman in first grade in room 200. Feeling a little bit braver I found out what they wanted to be and said that I was a story teller and would be writing about them on the Frankford Gazette. They knew about the internet and liked playing games.
- Here I had a 15 minute break so went down to the library for a drink of water and started up the laptop. I thought I would show the older kids what the web site looks like.
- Went room 100 to see Mr. Reid in kindergarten. Another very nice group of kids who did ask some questions. They gave me their full attention anyway.
- Then I went up to the second floor to see Mrs. Blum in second grade. After asking what various kids wanted to do when they grow up I found my first young writer. Mrs. Blum said the little girl has had some of her compositions read at assembly. She certainly paid close attention to me and asked good questions. I hope I gave some good answers.
- Went over to room 205 to see Mrs. Douglas in second grade. Along with asking about them and telling my story showed them the web site. Every kid in the world must be on the internet by now.
- In room 209 was another second grade with Mrs. Filut.
- I found Mr. Bamba in room 104 with some students. A very nice group who will be looking for my report on Tuesday.
- I went to room 201 to see Ms. Bruestle in another first grade. Went through some more of what do you want to do when you grow up and told my story about being a story teller.
- Took another 15 minute break in the library where I started to write this report.
- Then went up to the third floor to see the sixth grade with Ms. Diana Taylor. I had met this group before and recognized them. I passed out some pencils and a word game that Pat Smiley had made up for them and then went into my story. They knew it all but were good with questions and paid attention while they tried to solve the puzzle. I left a treat for them with Ms. Taylor and I headed back down to the library for a final review.
We filled out an evaluation and Mrs. Vaughn the principal talked to our group. There was some education talk that went right over my head. Then we got a small gift and a certificate of appreciation for participating. I have to admit I was plumb tuckered out after that morning.
My thanks to the staff who help me during the day and of course the teachers for their patience. Thanks to Terry Wech for turning me on to an interesting story. I’ll be posting something this week about that.
I have purposely left out the names of the kids to protect their privacy. It was not because I did not remember them. I’ll be looking forward to hearing from that young writer some day.