Dorothy Cresswell, Helen Fortier, and Katie Tolles - Offering the magic of singing together
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Dorothy's Blog

School begins without me!

Well, it's been a whole summer since my last day of school, and I still can't sleep in.  I'm still waking up right around 6 AM. So, when I woke up today, I was immediately aware that school would be starting without me.  It was okay, but I did wish I could sleep in! So I said a prayer for all the teachers and then all the students.  That the teachers would get to know, and then get to like, and then get to love all of their students.  Then I prayed for the students, that every one of them would feel welcomed and wanted and included.  That they would feel okay about what they know and what they don't know YET.  That they would go home having felt a connection with the teacher and with at least one peer.  Ahhh, my heart is still in the process I guess.
 
Yesterday, in a nostalgic way, I re-read the wonderful book that the parents had made for me when I retired.  Twenty five years of class photos and activities, twenty five years of students and parents, many of whom wrote letters and memories of their time in my class.  What came out again and again and again were memories of the songs. 
 
 "{My daughter} was in the talent show. She dressed up as Pocahontas and sang "Colors of the Wind." Dorothy played guitar and really helped her through the performance. It was awesome!"
 
"One of the songs, Barges, stayed with me for years, and I would quietly sing it whenever I felt sad or when it was raining or if I was bored in the car."
 
"I remember learning the song "Black Socks" and singing with the class as Dorothy played her guitar."
 
"I really liked singing all the old hippies songs like "Leaving On a Jet Plane" and the "Pebble Song."
 
"I always remember all the songs we sang: "Take Me Home Country Roads," and so many others. I love singing and still sing, a lot."
 
"I loved all the singing that we did. We sang folk songs, a donkey song in Spanish that we did at our own talent show...and of course the "Buffalo Song."
 
"I really liked singing in the chorus and learning sign language."
 
"I remember when our class did the musical, "Make Way for Ducklings" and I played Mack. ..I still know all the words to the Compost Song!! (And I will always remember that even my bicycle may be recyclable!)"
 
"{My daughter} still remembers all of the words to "Columbus Sailed the Ocean Blue" song."
 
"Dorothy helped a class full of "first-day-in-school" kids feel better by teaching us "The Butterfly Song."
 
"I learned many songs, and how to be kind. I met all the friends that I have now."
 
"There was one chant that I remember doing, usually before nap time.  I didn't like nap time or this chant (probably because it was meant to calm us down). I ended up liking this chant because of the way Dorothy taught it to us.
"
"My favorite song was "May We All Fly Like Eagles."
 
"I love singing songs with her on guitar. It's the awesome part."
 
So, the children have spoken.  They remember the songs and the joy of singing together.  That is my inspiration as I choose how to use my retirement.  As one of my favorite songwriter's, Helen Fortier, says, "And I will keep on singing, keep on singing, with a grateful heart, with a grateful heart!"

10 Comments to School begins without me!:

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marilyn on Wednesday, August 28, 2013 11:06 AM
ahh - the wonderful memories that we will always carry in our heart!
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