Not long ago I was sitting at the Apple Store in line for an appointment at the genius bar for my phone. I was catching up on emails when I heard a voice ask if I was Mrs. A.
Before I lifted my head, I knew it had to be a former student. The only time I am addressed by Mrs. A is by parents or students. I looked up and saw a young man smiling at me and telling me I was his fourth grade teacher several years ago. I could recognize him and his smile, but I couldn’t place him. It was over ten years ago, in another district, before first and last names were on class composites. He told me his name and asked if I remembered him. I did, but it was fuzzy. He had to remind me of the classroom, (did we look out the playground or front of the school) and who were some other students in our class. He also told me he had a crush on me that year. We both laughed.
The memories began to come back. It was a tough district that I worked in at the time. The classes were large, in an economically disadvantaged area, and I didn’t get much parent support. We also had severe budget cuts and we did not have preps. Gym, music and art had been slashed. We had a thirty minute lunch and went from 9:00am-2:00pm. I was concerned what would happen in their future. I worked there my first eleven years of teaching.
We chatted until it was my turn at the genius bar. My last question was, “What are you doing now?”
He looked at me and replied, “I did good. I’m in nursing school. I’m in college.”
I smiled and replied, “Great, I’m so happy for you.”