While winter was as cold as I try to forget, bus duty, my last ten minutes of my work day, has become a nice part of my daily routine. It is a harsh but appreciated transition of space. After hours of hushed reading and writing of students with wavering moods, I walk out the door, take two sharp turns and lead the first graders to the bus. These nice, forming creatures are just as happy as I to be filled with the fresh air- so much so that I am forced to politely yet sternly say, "Stop running please".
Then come the big kids. Or bigger kids. These ones are so excited and are somewhat preoccupied with getting the best seat on the bus, so I am forced to be a bit more forceful. "Stop running please, the rules have not changed!" (The most confusing run-in with the running rule is the dilemma of whether or not I should let them run if they are running late. If they are in jeopardy of missing the bus I of course do not stop them, yet I am letting up on my one and very important rule) There are a few who try me at least twice a week, hoping I will become bored of being the annoying bus duty girl. I am closer than ever before to understanding the eyes in the back of the head phenomena.
And then there are the days that I actually am bored, there are no children to stop from running, and I find it fun to sometimes join in on the conversations that are vital to get out before parting ways for a few hours, though most are so confused as to why I would contribute and forget what they were saying all together.
I have realized in the last couple weeks, now that sun has flown back north, that these ten minutes are one of the best parts of my day. I find myself smiling, laughing or singing without apparent reason. And then recognize it is the air, the beautiful sun, the kids laughing and yesterday even the wind that messed up my freshly salon-ed hair, that can at once make me thankful to be alive standing on the concrete at the charter school in the middle of some fields.