We had Joy School graduation last week, and boy, somehow over the past year these little girls have really grown up and got joy. Last year we had a graduation and it was a total bust. Horrible. Click here to read all about it (I didn’t even blog about it, it was so bad….I didn’t want to remember it). Every kid was crying and melting down….it’s a wonder that we all decided to go for another year after that horrible event. Glad we did because they got it this year. I love these girls (and luckily Charlie, our honorary member, has learned to behave himself more gentlemanly around them).
I think part of the reason the Graduation went so well was that I had a little huddle with the girls before we started and told them that they had to show how much Joy they had inside of them or they couldn’t graduate….and magic….not one tear. I guess they all really really want to move on to Kindergarten (this is Hazel’s THIRD year at Joy School).
I think we should have taken a picture of the mom’s throwing up our hats. As much as we all loved what Joy School did for our kids, I think we’re all pretty excited that it’s over for a while. Boy, it’s a lot of work. Good, important, hard work.
By my last day teaching, Hazel and I had learned not to totally clash during the class. Yes, it took three years….three years, a lot of yelling and frustration and prolonged time outs. Hazel loved Joy School at her friend’s houses, but something about me being the teacher didn’t work out too well for her. Since it was at her house she wanted to be in charge of EVERYTHING and that really pushes my buttons when I’m trying to get six kids to understand a lesson I’ve worked hard on preparing. Oh, how I love this little girl, even if I think I scared the other kids at times by being so darn mad at her during Joy School.
To her credit, I think Hazel really got the joy school concepts, and I love the Joy School concepts. I love the idea that kids should learn these important emotional skills before being pushed into the academic world of school. Joy School has given us a common language to talk about important things, things that she’ll hopefully draw on her entire life. I also love that Joy School has given Hazel a relationship with some amazing women. The other mom’s who taught with me have taught both of us so much. And I love that Joy School has taught me that I can do cool, crafty things with my kids. The lessons forced me to do things that I wouldn’t muster up the creativity or energy to do if I didn’t have it pushing me along.
Joy School does rock. (But I’m glad it’s over for now.)
For more info on Joy School, click here.