12 06 2008

Class starts promptly at 8:15. So you can imagine my agitation when, just before the bell rang at 8:15, there were none of my students to be found in my classroom. With this particular section of English class it’s rare for this to happen, as most of them arrive ten minutes early and spend those ten minutes asking me questions about what we will do during class.

Suddenly, one boy in a green hoodie came running into the classroom and slammed the door behind him. “They’re chasing me!” he exclaimed and proceeded to walk to the middle of the classroom. 

“Well, why are they chasing you?” I asked, becoming annoyed that already by 8:15 there could have been a rowdy enough situation in the hallway with my 7th graders to warrant a chase. Is it possible I once had that much energy? Was there, in fact, a day when I was once alert enough by 8:15 to move or even to think quickly enough for a chase? 

Suddenly there was a knock on the door and, puzzled, I asked my student—-the one who was being chased—-to open it. And then it happened:

“SURPRISE!” And in the doorway stood fourteen of my students, each armed with goodies: cakes, brigadeiro, juice, chocolates, breads, baked goods. 

They busted into the room and held these things out to me, ME standing behind my desk with a pen in hand frozen in the midst of sifting through a pile of papers and my mouth open with shock. All I could say was “What?! What are you guys doing?!” And they looked back at me with grins as wide as the classroom, giggling and chatting and asking, “Can we have a party?”

The ONLY answer to that kind of question, especially when confronted with all their gleaming little faces, faces that clearly show they’ve managed to fool their teacher, is “Of course.” And so we partied. 
Surprise party at school.
It was a goodbye party and although the time to leave isn’t exactly right now, their timing was perfect. When I think on it now, I am moved almost to tears by their kindness, their cunning, and their joy. It’s how I can’t wait to remember them, little bundles of smiling energy this morning. I had thought to bring my camera today, I’m not sure why. Sometimes I take it along with me. And it’s a good thing, too. I filmed them performing “The Highwayman,” and I filmed them at the party. It will be nice, once I’m home in the States, to be able to hear their voices again and see them as they were today during our special party.

Adequate words fail to come to mind right now. 

I will miss them SO much. 




8 responses

12 06 2008


It was really fun organizing and planning that goodbye party! But when I asked you the second time about what we were going to do on thursday I really thought you had some idea. I really appreciate the fact that you took your time to write a message for each of us. And We Will Also Miss You A LOT!!! Why do you think we did the party and everything, because we like you. Everybody agreed to doing it and said it was an amazing and fabulous idea!! I’m really glad you enjoyed it!!=)

12 06 2008

I LOVED it!!

12 06 2008

Your kids are incredible! Great memories and to think back about how much you helped them grow. And how they’ve helped you become the person you are as a teacher. Its awesome!

13 06 2008

To think these kids were able to organize such a treat without your knowledge. Not only do they adore you, but they’re adorable. Hooray for wonderful good-byes!

13 06 2008

So sweet. You are obviously a very special teacher 🙂

13 06 2008

What a bunch of sweethearts! Just when I get bogged down in despair at where this mad world is headed, I get to read an amazing blog about some truly special kids who are doing a wonderful job making this world a better place.

16 06 2008

So sweet. I remember a surprise party the 4th graders threw me when I left from student-teaching. It was the best feeling ever.

19 06 2008

Ms.c Luana was organizing every thing and the party was a great idea and we also lost almost he whole class but the real reason was that you could have a really good memory

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