June 29, 2012

The Teacher's Trinket Box

     On the very last day of school of my first year of teaching a kindergarten student had given me a candle in a hot pink box with a ribbon closure. The sweet student said, "Mrs. Jordan, I picked out this box just for you because I know how much you love pink!" Inside was a Yankee candle, a hand-drawn picture and a note from the child, and a touching letter from her parent thanking me for all that I had done. It was a very special way to end my first year. Later that afternoon, I removed the candle to take home, and had inadvertently placed a binder clipped bundle of notes, cards, pictures and other trinkets that were given to me by my students throughout the year inside the box.
     As I began to set up my classroom for the next year, I had placed the box on my shelf (as I just love pink) and forgot about the items inside. Several weeks later I experienced an extremely challenging day of difficult phone calls, behaviors, a child vomiting in the room, and various other minor issues. I was extremely tired, frustrated, overwhelmed and wondered for a moment, "What have I gotten myself into when I decided to become a teacher?" I sat in my chair, and glanced over at my pink box. For whatever reason, I decided to pull the ribbon open and found to my surprise the precious notes, cards, and trinkets from the previous year. My eyes filled with tears as I was reminded of how very fortunate I was to have become a teacher.


     My wonderful intern, Allison, finished her term with me and the class and I passed on the tradition of the "Teacher's Trinket Box" to her. My students and I wrote notes and enclosed a class picture. It was a tradition I was thrilled to pass. 




   
      We all have days when we feel overwhelmed and exhausted and we need to recharge and refocus on our profession. My "Happy Box" as I call it...is so very special to me and it makes the tough days all but disappear. Summers are great for that (although we spend a lot of time in preparation for the following year).
What do you do for yourself to "re-spark" your passion for teaching?   Are there traditions that you pass on to colleagues?   I would love to read any comments on this :) 

13 comments:

Lisa R. said...

Aww that is such a sweet idea. I keep my notes and pictures from students, but it would be nice to have a box like yours. Thanks for sharing your memories box with us!
Lisa
Learning Is Something to Treasure

Laura Wagner Jordan said...

Thanks for commenting Lisa! Hugs to you and happy teaching!
Laura

ThinkWonder Teach said...

Oh I just love this idea! I am so going to pin this. Now I need to find a box!!

misty
Think, Wonder, & Teach
Honey Bunch Blog Design

Laura Wagner Jordan said...

Thanks Misty :) That is the fun part! Finding the perfect box! I just love to shop!

Kristin Kennedy said...

What a cute idea. A couple years ago, a few parents threw me a surprise wedding shower at school. They made me a little memory book of photos from the shower (and a couple with me at the ceremony) and frame signed by each of my first graders. Every time I look at it, it brings back such great memories of an exciting time in my life. And the best part is, I will have several of those same students again this year as fourth graders.:)

Kristin
iTeach 1:1

Laura Wagner Jordan said...

That is awesome! What a sweet sentiment. I am moving up a GL this year and expect to have some of my students as well! Isn't that exciting! I can't wait for the upcoming year.
Thanks for sharing!
Laura

Heather said...

That is such a sweet idea!! It is always nice to have those little reminders on days when we question our sanity!

HootHootHooray

teaching fashionista said...

Love this Idea. Thanks for stopping by teaching fashionista!
I'm your newest follower-Loving your blog :)

Laura Wagner Jordan said...

Thanks for commenting :)

Ann said...

Hey Mrs. Jordan, I'm your 100th follower! And I'm giving you the versatile blogger award! Come back to my blog and check it out!
ann
The Caffeinated Classroom

Layla Wiedrick Henry said...

Thanks for the add!
I am your newest follower!
Fancy Free in Fourth

Allison816 said...

One of the sweetest gifts I have ever received, it will be used and cherised! You are an amazing mentor and friend. Thank you for all the inspiration and guidance you continue to give. <3 <3

Krystal Van Kampen said...

Love, love, LOVE this! I started a portfolio that held the notes, but sometimes they just don't fit (and yet others, I don't have the time to punch the holes, so I just tuck it inside, creating a potential mess). This would be a GREAT solution. I could even make cardstock separators that are labeled with the school year so that I can pinpoint the who with the when! THANK YOU!