Tuesday, April 10, 2012

What a Difference a Week Makes

Hi, friends. Yep, you are reading a post from me two days in a row. But, this one shan't be as long as yesterdays...though a tad bit more on the serious side.

As I was trying to keep my students on task admiring my students' independent reading, I was reminded that one week ago today, these same sweet firsties were in the throngs of a duck-and-cover with a sub. Where was I? I was in Houston, in the middle of my second day of a 3-day literacy conference. Imagine the scene...three of my colleagues and I had just returned from lunch. The first gasp came from the next table, then there was talk of a tornado in Arlington. We exchanged puzzled looks. Tornado. In Arlington? Wait, but we're not there...we're here in Houston...a monumental (at the time) 4 hours away. Then came the announcement of a total district lockdown. Thus began the frantic calls home. Calls to the school. Disbelief set in. The only small consolation was that we (as a school) had practiced the duck-and-cover drill twice this year. The students knew what to do. They had a sub. But, the only problem was that I wasn't there. I wasn't there to console them, to reassure them, to physically see them with my own eyes and know that they were okay. Hours dragged by until we finally got a clearer picture of what had happened at school, in our neighborhoods, and in our city. A sigh of relief. We were truly blessed. Although some homes were destroyed (and a little too close for comfort) within blocks of my house, my kids were okay, their homes were okay, and our school was okay.

So, "H" may be acting wonky today. "B" seems to be having trouble following class expectations. "K" is a little too chatty. But, ya know what? All is good. I am in my classroom with my students. I can say we are all okay. Because I can see it with my own eyes.


  1. Wow! That must have been scary for your kids. You are right - it is always better if you can be there with them when something out of the ordinary happens, and it always affects them for a while.
    We need to remember that they are only little and sometimes they have been through BIG things.

    I hope they settle soon, but I'm really glad they are safe and have you back again!

    The Learning Curve

    1. Hi, Jane. After I returned, we discussed how they felt before, during, and after the surrounding tornadoes. They shared their fears during the duck-and-cover, their thoughts of their family, and the small prayers said in their time of need. It was a very humbling and genuine expression of classroom community. I was/ am so proud to be their teacher!

      Thanks for taking the time to stop by and comment...I appreciate your kind words :)

  2. Hey there,
    I saw that you stopped by and followed me. I'm your newest follower, too :)

    Fun in Room 4B

    1. Hi, Elizabeth. Thank you and welcome to my blog! :)

  3. WOW! That must have been terrifying all ways round. A good reminder of why it is important to practice safety drills so that the kids know what to do even if there is a sub. I think we will have an earthquake (I live on the west coast where we hope that the "big one" is when everyone one is safely at home with their parents) drill tomorrow!
    I found you through TBTS and am your newest follower.

    rubber boots and elf shoes

    1. Hi, Sandi. Isn't TBTS great? The only way for our students to be prepared and stay safe is to practice, no matter how "inconvenient" the drills are to our schedule or classroom instruction. Thanks for coming by! Super cute blog name :)