When I was in college, learning about being a secondary (not elementary!) teacher, I sneered at the Elementary Education majors. Then, I taught 5th grade for a while. I learned a bit of respect, but didn't really want to teach the little kids full-time.
I took a college class last year: Developmental Psychology. Learning all sorts of intricacies about how people grow and develop through all the stages of their young lives...awesome. Our Creator-God is so wise and gracious to us!
But I still never thought I'd want to teach the little guys. But last week, I got to do something new. I was a classroom assistant in a little-kids' classroom. Yes, there were 17 kindergarten-2nd graders.
I thought I would be irrelevant and stodgy to them, but I really got to like them. They were so cute. They thought new things were adventuresome instead of tedious. They attempted (and succeeded!) most of the crafts and activities we threw at them. They thought I was the coolest. They drew me pictures. They gave me goodbye hugs. They gave me good-morning hugs. Aaaaaaw. (Hugs make me melt.)
I sat with one boy on the bus after our field trip. He is a kindergartener. He told me all about his school, his teacher, his classmates. We talked about what we had done on the field trip (we saw sheep! we learned about spinning wool! we got koolaid packets to dye the wool they gave us!).
Here's the best part: he recently learned to read (he learned the letters and how to sound-out words, at least), and I helped him read the word "LEMON"...then I showed him the picture of lemons on his koolaid packet. His eyes lit up and he read the word again, and again, and pointed to the picture. "They're the same thing!" he said.
Magic. I love little kiddles now.