It’s that time of year and our Stella couldn’t have been more excited for her very first first day of school! She just couldn’t wait to get out the door. I, on the other hand, was a bit of wreck. Our baby’s first day of school … she is getting all grown up … what if she skins her knee? Will Mrs. Nichols understand her when she asks to use the bathroom? Will she make friends? And those are just the little worries. What I’m learning from other seasoned parents is that I will have a list of new worries every year on the first day of school.
I also worried that Stella wouldn’t remember “please” and “thank you.” Would she stand in line? Would she wait until it was her turn? Share? Raise her hand when she wanted to say something?
As my husband and I walked her up to her playground, I realized it wasn’t the right moment for Stella to give her new teacher, Mrs. Nichols, the apple we had brought for her.
Hoping to start Stella out on the right foot with some good manners, I picked the prettiest organic apple I could find at our local Saturday Farmers’ Market. Did you know THE apple began as a religious tradition? All fruit was referred to as “apples” back in the day. Then it became a luxury to buy a store-bought apple and was thought to be a very good gift to give your teacher to help with her good health. Now it is still a tradition in many countries, and the apple has become a symbol of education.
I put this symbol of education into Stella’s backpack and told her to please give it to Mrs. Nichols when she had a chance. Well, when I arrived to pick Stella up from her very first first day of school, I was curious when I couldn’t find the apple in her backpack. I asked what happened to the apple and her response (said with a smile and a wave of her hand) was, “Oh, Mrs. Nichols loves apples!” I am one proud Mom. She didn’t forget to think of others on her first first day of school.