So, as I wrap up this experiment to specifically notice joyful moments in my teaching day, I just have to point out that honestly, the biggest reason I love my job, as corny as it sounds, is the kids. A mentor of mine (Mrs. Martha [Marty] Patton, Bless her soul) put this love of children so eloquently in a poem. This poem was printed along side her obituary and I have had it posted in my classroom ever since. It touches my heart every time I glance at it.

I am a Teacher...
And I Thank God for it Every Day

by Martha Patton (1935-2000)

Yes, I teach first grade.

Where else...

would a handsome and very young man put his arms around me and ask, "Do you know that I love you?"

could I wear the same dress day after day and be told each time that it's pretty?

could I have the privilege of wiggling loose teeth and receive a promise that I may pull them when they are loose enough?

would the future look as bright as it does amid an energetic group to whom nothing is impossible?

could I guide the first letter formations of a chubby little hand that may someday write a book or an important document?

could I forget my own aches and pains because of so many cut fingers, scratched knees, bumped heads, and broken hearts that need care?

would each day both start and end with a shower of hugs?

could I feel so close to my Maker as I do each year when, because of something I have done, little children learn to read?

Yes, I teach the first grade, and what a privilege it has been.

Marty, you inspire me every day!

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