From The Storyteller
Hello All: My 1st grade year stills holds a place as one of my most memorable. I suspect many of you can name a memorable school year also. Enjoy, Doug
“Boy, this is going to be tougher than I thought” is my Monday-thought at the beginning of my second week in the 1st grade. My parents had already received the first of many postcards from school commenting on my behavior, and that was not the worst of it.
Because ADHD and dyslexia did not exist in Chicago in the early 50’s, my first week helped to identify me as an energetic young boy, who has trouble reading. While this too was troubling, internally I was dealing with something far worse. I’m six years old, in the second week of 1st grade, and feeling terrible because I didn’t know my teacher’s name.
I have been talked to (often) by the lady that's there every day, but I don’t have a clue who she is. At first, I thought this woman might be my teacher, but that idea faded because every time she talked to me about something, she would tell me, “Mrs. Summers won’t like that.” I didn’t know who this “Mrs. Summers” might be, but I was guessing when she arrived, she would be my teacher. What I also knew was when she arrived, I was going to be in deep trouble.
By the third week this energetic, redheaded boy, who had trouble reading, finally figured out the lady that showed up every day was the dreaded Mrs. Summers. I also learned the desks were screwed securely to the floor, and carving my name in the wooden desk top was a bad idea.
Which brings me to offering a belated thank you to Mrs. Summers. That year I learned to read and made it out of the 1st grade. This is also a thank you to all the “Mrs. Summers”, who love kids like me through 1st grade.
Moral: Teaching 1st grade can be exciting.