DEAR ABBY: I have a confession: I still get crazy nervous about the first day of school. To keep my mind busy, I have done the usual teacher things: updated curriculum; rearranged classroom seating a million times; bought way too many new cool, cutesy items for the classroom; and freshened up my classroom decor. But I am still very nervous about the first day. After years of teaching, I’d thought the nerves would have lessened by now. Why do I still get nervous about the first day of school? And how can I tame these butterflies (no hornets!) in my stomach better than I have in past years? Please help! I don’t want students to see me like this! — BUTTERFLY TEACHER
DEAR BUTTERFLY TEACHER: First of all, I wish I could hug your neck and assure you that you are amazing. I have heard that the ones who are worrying are the ones who are really making a difference. Take a deep breath and know that you are not alone. God is with you. No student is in your room by accident. And it is not an accident that you are their teacher. It’s a brand new year. Instead of focusing on your butterflies, focus on all the opportunities you will have to pour into your students. No school year is perfect, and our mistakes don’t define us. If you have a bad day, rest assured that you will get the chance to make it up the next day. The students are just as nervous about tomorrow, and by the end of the year, will probably remember very few specifics of their first day in your class. They’ll just remember how awesome of a teacher you were the whole school year!
Now- go and knock it out the park!