Today I had a half-day with a first grade class. The teacher had everything outlined and prepared, but also left a note giving me the option of fitting in some music. I have substituted this class several times. The children know me and are happy to see me. First graders are all about music and especially activity songs.
I dismissed the class at the end of the day. The new little girl with her long dark hair and pretty dark eyes eagerly approached me before going home. She said, "I like you teacher because you teach me singing." I smiled. You can imagine how I felt. I thanked her and was happy to inform her that I would probably see her again and that we would sing again. She was pleased and left.
We should see each other again. Her teacher knows me. I volunteered in her classroom ten years ago when she was Janna's first grade teacher. Every week I would provide a little music segment when I came to help. Now she makes a point to ask me to substitute her class hoping that I will add a little music and fun while I am there. I believe the children I teach now, then, and through the years, even though it's rarely verbalized, think:
"Music is the universal language of mankind."