First Day Of School
was school, Ben?” I asked
my Grandson after he
kindergarten this year.
work is too long…and there’s not enough time to play,”
replied with a deep sigh.
are some things that never change, I thought to myself as
remembered my own first day of school.
I vividly recalled sitting
my cousin, Suzanne, on her back steps at the end of the first day
school. We had been so
excited about going to school. We
our elbows on our knees and our chins propped up on our hands
we lamented, like Ben did, “the work is too long… and there’s
enough time to play.”
couldn’t help but remember Ben’s own mother, my daughter, and her
to the first day of school. Julie
was also disappointed with
first day of school and so was her little sister.
“I want to go “sool”
you not let me!” my
three-year-old daughter announced
after her big sister boarded
the big yellow school bus.
Julie returned home that afternoon I asked her the same question
I had asked Ben, “How was school, Julie?”
also replied with a long, sad face but her answer was a little different
Ben’s as she announced, “I didn’t learn to read today.”
a disappointment for a little girl who thought she would magically
how to read her little books after the first day of school.
I had to
to her that she would eventually learn to read but
didn’t happen quite that fast.
year as the school bus went by my house, my mind went back to
school days again. I could
almost smell the chalk dust in the air.
suppose few, if any, schools still use chalk and blackboards.
been replaced with newer equipment and large computer
One thing that I don’t missed is the irritating sound of the
as some ornery student caused it to screech across the board.
also wonder what new occupation the children these days manage to
elected to do in order to get out of school for a few moments since
are no erasers to clean. It
was fun to be “chosen” for eraser
duty. This was a task
accomplished by going outside and
erasers together while sneezing and coughing.
many baby boomers now have allergies, it’s simply because
all have chalk dust in our lungs!
remember the excitement of the first day of school when my friends
I would go peek through the windows of the school house to try to see
improvements had been made to the classrooms.
It was during the
months that the gym would be varnished and rooms that needed
would be repainted. We
probably added to the janitor's work with all the
finger and nose prints of curious children smeared all over the
the first day of school, the anticipation was so great that I would be
early in the morning and ready long before it was time to leave for
walked about 6 blocks to school in new shoes that felt stiff and
going barefoot so much during the summer months.
didn’t use back packs when I was in school but there wasn’t very much
carry. We had some notebook
paper, a pencil or two, crayons, a pair
scissors, and paste. The
paste smelled so good that it was sometimes
challenge for the teachers to keep some of the smaller
from eating the paste.
didn’t miss having back packs because who needs them when we
cigar boxes! We carried our
small supplies inside of a cigar box from
of the local stores. The stores in town must have saved cigar boxes all
just to give to us children because all we had to do was ask and the
owner would give us one. We saved them and used them from year
year until they fell apart. A notebook full of paper, the cigar box with
and we were off down the road headed for the schoolhouse.
first day of school was exciting. It
was a new beginning. The
knowledge had been opened and we anticipated great learning
The school had lots of books and no wonder that a
girl might be disappointed that she “didn’t learn to read today”.
first day of school is a milestone or a significant event in our lives
most of us remember. It’s
a big step for a small child toward
babyhood behind and so “there isn’t enough time to play”.
might simply remember that first day of school because of a new
of paper, a pair of new shoes, or our picture being taken
our parents to commemorate the day.
too soon small children grow up and get to go “to sool”, and although
might be disappointment on that first day because “I didn’t learn
read today”, they do eventually learn to read.
does seem that Ben is right about one thing though…no matter
old we get, nor how much we learn, it still seems
“The work is too long…and there’s not enough time to play.”