The Difference A Year Makes

1st graders are the cutest things ever. I don’t know their age comparison to our kindergarteners or 1st graders in the States. (They must be comparable because they graduate at the same ages.) But although they share they cuteness and tininess, they still have their own personalities and dispositions with dealing with the world. Some are bold as a giant, outspoken and unabashed. Others are dumbstruck by the overwhelming sights and sounds of this foreign new environment. And still others are so intimidated, they cry at the drop of a hat.

As I mentioned in another post, the students stay together pretty much throughout their entire education. So the students I had last year in 1st grade are now together again in the 2nd grade.

Last year, there was this one little boy in the 1st grade that immediately captured my attention. His sister was in the same class, but she looked older than he did. I think that his mom wanted him to stay with his sister, so he started school a year early. This kid for the entire first part of the school year cried if he was even looked at, much less spoken to. The second part of the school year he was a little more comfortable but mischievous. He would play around his desk, but when disciplined he would shrink in a corner and decidedly not want to be touched.

But by the end of the school year, he would smile at me in the halls and yell my name in chorus with the other children.

It’s amazing what a year does. This year, Luka is a whole other kid. He sits in the front now. He is the first in his class to see me when I am coming and runs to me to shake my hand and say hello. He not only writes all of his English vocabulary in his notebook, he is the first to do so. And best of all, he answers my questions, asks for me when he needs help and reads out loud!

Luka in action

Luka in action

It’s amazing the difference a year makes.


“I just can’t wait til my 10 year reunion
I’m gonna bust down the double doors
And when I stand on these tables before you
You will know what all this time was for”

No Such Thing, John Mayer


Holla atcha boy!

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