I had a choice of rooms when I started at my high school. It was this tiny space that I had to make work. Little did I know, however, it would become the setting of the first two seasons of my teaching career.
The next two years in that room signaled a lot for me and my students.
Children learned. Children pretended to learn. Children laughed. Children cried. Children forged friendships. Children lost friends. The memories in that room, 331 to be exact, will never be forgotten. It’s as much a part of me as my students.
But when I return to my school, I will do so in a new classroom.
Leaving that room was easy for me. Naturally two of my students – the ones who spent the most time in the room – weren’t ready to let it go. It’s fine, though. They’ll get over it and enjoy the bigger environment for their learning and doing amazing things.
The last days of school, I really questioned what I did right the past year. I took a cue from Moneyball and laid down on my old classroom’s floor and thought about everything.
The first two years. How much I’ve improved. How much I still had to learn. How far I’ve come from. How far I still have to go. It allowed me to reflect on what I did and what I’m going to do next.
It’s fitting actually that I will be moving into a bigger room. I’m moving forward onto bigger, better things. The journey with my freshmen, who will be juniors next year enters the next stage. My sophomores are now seniors, meaning we’re at the end of the road. It’s a display on how far we’ve come, going from the tiny room into a much larger one. My mind is filled with ideas on what I plan on doing with my students next year. The overall big picture: take what worked in the past two years and combine them. It’s part of my overall growth as a teacher. I’m an odd one. I obsess over the big picture. I don’t like taking too much time off because it leaves me feeling unfulfilled.
It’s crazy to think that two summers ago, I was questioning whether or not I was going to become a teacher. Now here I am, seeing it all slowly come together.
I know bigger things are on the horizon.
And it starts with the room.
Fun facts about The 331 Club
- Five seniors will walk across the stage having been in my classroom both years. Only two will have done so for full years.
- 13 rising juniors will have been in my classroom both years – with many of them with the potential to become four-year Delos students
- Nine rising seniors will have been in my classroom for both years.
- Six of rising juniors, assuming they take journalism all four years and fall into my English class senior year, will have had me as a teacher for 11 periods (seven journalism periods and four English semester). Some will have me as a teacher for 13 classes (seven journalism semesters, four English semesters, two Student Aide semesters).