Sandy over at Soaring Through Second Grade is hosting a linky party about a subject that is near and dear to my heart. No, it isn’t reading or writing workshop (or math, haha if you read yesterday’s post). It’s our furry friends! She’s even making this educational by asking us to include what our beloved pets have taught us. If I had to site objectives on top of that, I’d reference by previously stated goal to include more of “me” in some of my posts. Am I justified yet? 😉
When I left for college, I had to leave my first dog, Kerrigan, at home with my parents. We had practically grown up together after I saved my allowance to buy her when I was in fifth grade. She loved our family house and her time outside on the deck, and I knew she’d never adjust well to apartment life with me fresh out of college and working long hours as a first year teacher. In that way, Kerrigan taught me about doing the right thing, even when it’s hard, and putting the needs of others ahead of my own.
|She helps with school work.|
We currently have three furry friends at our house. The first is my dear, sweet Isabelle. She was a rescue, but in truth she probably rescued me. I was commuting an hour each way to work as a first year teacher, working long hours, and not taking enough time for myself when I adopted her. It broke my heart to see her emotionally and physically damaged (she had a bright pink cast on a broken leg when I found her) and I knew I had to take her home. We’ve been pretty inseparable ever since. It was a long road to work her through some of her fears, but she really is the best dog now. I can’t imagine there ever being another Isabelle for me. She’s taught me about the power of unconditional love and patience. I think we can all apply that one to our students, especially the ones who seem a little broken.
|Play, play, play, sleep!|
Next is Gracie, my timid little Chihuahua who rules the house when no one is looking. She lives for snuggle time and loves to spend her days completely invisible inside her blankets. I brought her home two years after I adopted Isabelle. I had been looking for a playmate for Izzy, and there was just something about Gracie’s little tail wag that made me want to add her to our family. Gracie has taught me the importance of taking time to stop and play (or nap!) when I need it. She’s also taught me not to judge a book by its cover or believe in reputations because this little dog is like no other Chihuahua I’ve met. I think that’s another one we can apply to our students, right?
|She takes prisoners.|
Finally, we have our newest addition Lily. My husband had never had a dog. Shortly after we were married, we tossed around the idea of adding another dog to the family that would be ours since my other two were pretty set on loving me more (haha). While “just looking” at the mall one day, we stumbled across Lily. I had never bought a dog at a pet store before and had definite feelings against it. However, we just couldn’t leave her there. We went back the next day to bring her home. Ryan even called the pet store repeatedly until they opened, determined not to let her get away. She is so smart and learns tricks quickly, but she is WILD. We jokingly call her the Terrorist because she’s always destroying her toys, bothering her older sisters, or tearing up and down the stairs. She’s taught me to appreciate the more active members of my class and find ways to channel their energy into positive behaviors. I think that’s an important lesson that can sometimes be overlooked while dealing with the frustrating feelings that come along with the negative behaviors.
I’ve had fun sharing my furry friends with you while reflecting on the lessons they’ve taught me that can carry over into my classroom too. For more furry friends, click on over to Sandy’s linky party.