My Hopes and Expectations for This School Year

Zach started first grade today. This morning I read him a letter I wrote to reflect on my hopes and expectations for the school year ahead. I got the idea from a blog post on The Four Wendys.

Here’s the letter:

Today you’re starting 1st grade. I’m so excited for you for all of the great experiences you’re going to have. You’re going to spend time with friends you made last year and make new friends. You’re going to learn more about the subjects you already love like math, science, and dinosaurs. You’re going to feel more comfortable reading and writing, and hopefully, you’ll really start to enjoy them as much as I do.

There will be times that aren’t so fun. There will be a lot of hard work. There will be times you won’t get along with some of the kids. Sometimes people will use harsh words or play too roughly. Sometimes that person will be you. We’ll work through it all together, reminding each other to use kind words and have peaceful bodies.

You are very special. You are the only one of you there is or will ever be. I’m really grateful to be your mom. You are a very important member of our family.

It’s also good to remember that you’re not the only or the most important member of our family, or your classroom, or your friends. We are all valuable members of our community, and we need to take care of each other.
You have grown so much just in the last few months, not just your height, but in your kindness, your patience, and your creativity. I’m looking forward to watching you learn, teach, and share all the gifts and ideas you have.

I love you, I appreciate you, and I bless you, for you are God’s perfect child. God and I love you just the way you are.


What are you most looking forward to or dreading this school year?

10 thoughts on “My Hopes and Expectations for This School Year

  1. Mara Migraineur August 19, 2013 at 11:27 am Reply

    My son is totally stoked about starting school (or he was when I dropped him off this morning). He sang the whole first way. “First day of first grade! I love first grade! This will be so much fun!” I hope that it lasts (at least a day or two?). I hope that as things develop I have the resources to handle it all. I fear the way he is perceived by others and how he feels he needs to project himself to others.

    • flawson August 19, 2013 at 11:45 am Reply

      I’m glad he was so happy for school to start again. Whatever happens, you are resilient and enough. You have a great community to lean on.

  2. Experienced Bad Mom (@ExperBadMom) August 20, 2013 at 8:46 am Reply

    That is such as great letter. I want to borrow it for my 1st grader! However, she’s so smart she could probably tell I was plagiarizing you. But it does echo all my sentiments for her year, too. And my fifth grader? Dear Lord, give me strength. He is on the cusp of sweet little boy/smelly hormonal tweener. My wish for him is social resilience, bravery and kindness.

    • flawson August 20, 2013 at 8:50 am Reply

      This was a lot of fun to write. I was surprised that I was a little nervous reading it to him.

      Your kids might surprise you by being receptive. It’s uncanny how quickly kids can notice whether someone is being authentic or not.

  3. Emily Fenicle August 20, 2013 at 10:04 am Reply

    This was beautifully written. Thanks for sharing. Our son entered 5th grade, but so many of these points hold true. We try to emphasize the “you are not the most important member of…” point all the time. He’s at an age where every kid thinks they are all that & a bag of chips. It’s gets harder each year. Glad to have found your blog.

    • flawson August 20, 2013 at 10:11 am Reply

      Welcome! I love your “all that and a bag of chips,” totally made me smile.

      I think a lot of what’s in this letter is stuff I need to work on too.

  4. […] This school year is all about starting new rituals apparently. I already posted about writing a letter to Zach before the first day of school. From now on, we’re also going to do a […]

  5. […] school year is all about starting new rituals apparently. I already posted about writing a letter to Zach before the first day of school. From now on, we’re also going to do a […]

  6. Lauren August 26, 2013 at 7:33 pm Reply

    A beautiful letter and a lovely tradition! Your son is a lucky boy.

    • Frankie Laursen August 26, 2013 at 7:52 pm Reply

      Thank you! It felt great to really take time to tell him what I love about him and what we need to work on together.

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