It was wonderful to see so many of you at Back-to-School Night last week. We had a great turnout, and I had the opportunity to visit every classroom and talk with many parents. I heard teachers discussing the math curriculum, the Teachers College Reading and Writing Units of Study, Toolbox, the many enrichment programs provided to our students at Kensington, science and social studies curricula, and field trip plans. I am always struck by the fact that those of us who are educators have the wonderful opportunity to start anew each fall. As teachers, our new crop of students is an opportunity to refine our skills, create a community of learners, and collaborate with a new group of parents and colleagues. As parents, the new school year brings an opportunity to help our children embrace new challenges, as our families settle back into familiar routines of earlier bedtimes, homework, and the dreaded alarm clocks.
When I was young, I remember that every fall meant blank notebooks, long sharpened pencils, and new shoes. It also meant many anxious moments as I pondered the anticipation of long division, unknown teachers, and the possibility of being separated from my friends. That juxtaposition of excitement, anticipation, and anxiety surprises me anew every year, both as an educator and as a parent. Growing up is such a cyclical process; rather than meeting a challenge, overcoming it and moving on, children (and adults) often meet the same challenge over and over, year after year, each time at a new stage of development. It’s like the rings on a tree. Each layer looks similar to the last, but each adds strength that enables the tree to stand tall and withstand storms as it grows.
We begin our new year at Kensington with a few new faces among our teaching and support staff, and we are all excited to get to know them and build our community! In our front hallway we have created a space devoted to “The People Who Make it Work.” Please stop as you pass through and read about all the adults in our school; you’ll learn about who attended Kensington School as a child, who loves to travel, whose children attend (or attended) our school, and many other “fun facts” about our teachers and other staff.
A few reminders:
The KEF-sponsored enrichment classes are now in full swing. Our PE teacher, Csilla, wants you to remember that if you enter our campus from the lower playground you must be alert to the PE classes that take place many afternoons close to pick up time. Please do not walk through games, and if you have a toddler or young children with you, please be sure that they do not interfere with the PE classes. Please watch out for flying balls and Frisbees; stay close to the retaining wall by the hillside if PE classes are in session.
Please remember not to interrupt classes during the school day. If you have a message, or a lunch to deliver, or a child to pick up, please go to the office and ask Pam or Barbara for assistance.