For the past 14 months or so I've been teaching the Valiant 11 class at church - the 11 years old boys and girls. We've been studying the New Testament and with my previous class we were studying the Old Testament. I was looking forward to teaching the Book of Mormon to my new class this coming year but had a surprise last week. Our ward primary president asked me to teach the Sunbeams.
Wow, what a switch - to go from teaching 11-12 year olds to teaching 3-4 year olds. I as instantly excited when I was asked to teach the Sunbeams. I didn't want to teach Gwenna, though. I thought we both deserved the chance to not have the other in class. And that was gratefully arranged.
It's not the first time I've taught Sunbeams. I transitioned a boy in our old ward from nursery into Sunbeams when I was his one-on-one aide. I really enjoyed sunbeams then. But to be honest, I didn't get into that calling until February (well, I was asked to work with him in January but I transitioned him out of nursery and the next week, his first week in Sunbeams, was February) so I wasn't there when the kids were brand new to primary.
So this Sunday was our new Sunbeams first Sunday in primary. Our ward was a week behind due to getting teachers called. I went into today excited that not only was Gwenna going to be a Sunbeam, I was going to be a Sunbeam (again)! Let me sum up my entire experience today in one short phrase: I need a nap.
... And as I told Ted, I EARNED a nap. Wow, I had forgotten how much it takes in the beginning. Teaching the kids how to sit in their seats, raise their hands, keep their hands to themselves, the potty breaks, the drink breaks. It was a little intense! I did enjoy it though. These are super special kiddos and I know we're going to have fun.
Oh, and Gwenna?
She's stoked. Not only did she get to say the prayer (and did it all by herself, no help from her teacher) but she got to sing AND eat chocolate. Sounds like her Sunbeam experience was a little less involved than mine, just as it should be.
I'm so excited to see Miss Gwenna growing up and see how excited she is for each new step. She's a pretty brave kid. No tears, no clinginess; she just dove into primary with an eager heart. I'm excited for us to grow together.