2009, My 50th Anniversary of Starting Kindergarten!

When school starts again at this time NEXT year, it'll be 50 years since this little 5-year old kid from Florida went to his first day of kindergarten.  You know, we often wonder what our first memory of life is.. and that first day of school is mine.  While I don't remember a thing about being four years old, that first day stands out as the first time I filed away those little school memories for future reference. (Seeing our back to school video on the web and 13 News tonight brought that subject back up..)  Let me share with you.

I lived in Archer, Florida where they had an elementary school, but no kindergarten.  We had to travel 9 miles over to the town of Newberry.  Miss Mary Bell was my teacher in 1959.  The room was a small separate building away from the elementary school and Newberry High School, home of the mighty Panthers.  (In later years, Newberry High School would graduate future Denver Broncos Mike Brown and Ricky Nattiel!)  But I digress...

My mom brought me over, and walked into kindergarten class with me.  I joined my other new classmates, none of whom were my friends from Archer.  I thought she was going to stay with me all day!  She brought me to Miss Bell and slowly turned to make her getaway.  I was distracted by what appeared to be some very fun games we were going to play.  But as I turned and saw Mom walking through the door, the waterworks started!  I could believe she was leaving me here!  She helped bring me back to my classmates.  Miss Bell fortunately had a big wooden shoe with shoelaces to divert my attention, her tool to teach kids how to tie their shoes.  By the time my first shoestring tying class was through, my eyes were dry, and the remainder of my first day of school was just fine. 

Those are very fond memories, and I wish the very best for those little five-year olds beginning their lifelong journey of learning today.. and tomorrow.  Tell me about your first day of kindergarten!    RH

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