The new school year brings a huge amount of anxiety for Mateo. This year was one of the harder ones. He is going into 4th grade and a whole new classroom and a brand new teacher. He keeps the same class for two years and the past two years he had one of our favorite teachers, so it was hard to let that go.
He will have all new classmates who won’t really understand why he flaps his hands sometimes, clears his throat and may not understand their questions. It’s scary and beyond nerve-wracking for him.
He is starting this year off with a substitute because his long term teacher is currently on Maternity leave. His Special Ed teacher is also on Maternity leave so he won’t have her here either. So the stress of this year was taking it’s toll as we prepared for today for us all.
He was reluctant to leave his laptop behind, but did really well when I gave him a 5 minute warning. His only protests were against my first day photo pictures that I insisted on taking. But I got this adorable one after much coaxing.
We did a preview of his classroom on Friday, he was happy to see that his best friend was sitting next to him (we will see how long that lasts). And his other friends from his last class were surrounding his seat. His substitute was quite nice and Mateo seemed to really enjoy meeting her and his permanent teacher as well.
He sat in line very quietly waiting to be dismissed to class. His eyes looked down, he seemed anxious and a little sad. I kneeled down and squeezed his shoulder and told him that today was a short day and Nini and Pop (his grandparents) were going to be picking him up. I got almost a smile from him, and then it was time for him to go off to his first day of 4th grade.
After school I nervously called him, expecting him to be negative or non-responsive when talking to me about his day. But the opposite happened. He excitedly told me about his day, and how he played with his best friend at recess and that his teacher was very nice, and even that he was going to have to move seats on Friday. I was so happy to hear all of the positives!!
When I got home I read his homework which was a very funny letter to his teacher about himself. He wrote about how his favorite part of class is working on the computer and his favorite time of the school day is when it’s time to go home. Got to love this kid’s honesty.
Here’s to an amazing 2015-2016 school year for everyone! Fingers crossed things continue this well!