Friday we celebrated Valentine’s Day in my fourth grade classroom. There was no avoiding it, and honestly I enjoy this celebration.
I’ve always worked to keep it low key, since for the majority of my teaching career I worked in a school where many of the children come from rather dire situations. Sometimes there isn’t money for Valentines, and sometimes there isn’t anyone at home who cares whether a child has Valentines to bring to school or not. It’s really very sad, since a box of store bought Valentines can be had for a dollar, far less than the cost of a pack of cigarettes or six pack of beer or another tattoo, but I digress.
I don’t work in that situation anymore, and the atmosphere on Valentine’s Day was electric. The children were so excited to share their cards and candies, and I couldn’t help but enjoy their enthusiasm. We had a wonderful morning and accomplished all that we set out to do, then after lunch we finally distributed cards. I had a couple of kids who didn’t bring their own cards distribute mine, and I soaked in the atmosphere. The kids were happy and cooperative and they reminded me of my own elementary school Valentine’s days. I also watched as my little bag overflowed, and heart shaped boxes of candy piled up next to it. These kids spoiled me like crazy! Along with the cards and hearts, I received a giant kiss, a pink Webkinz fish, and a Starbucks gift card. All of these are great, but my absolute favorite is the little solar powered pig with wings that I was given by one of my little boys. O.M.G. It’s adorable. The kids know I love my flying pigs, and this little guy found the perfect one. It has a place of honor in the classroom.
I’m so fortunate to work with these children, and with these families who go out of their way to help their kids out and show appreciation for their teachers. I definitely felt the love this Valentine’s Day, and for that I am so grateful.