Last Wednesday was the first day of school for the first through sixth graders at my field practicum site. It was also my first day of school, as I began my fieldwork the same day, splashing through puddles in the parking lot as I made my way to the entrance. At 8:00 on Wednesday morning, I found myself wandering the school’s hallways in search of my supervisor, as students in crisp blue polo shirts streamed through these same hallways in search of their new classrooms. Despite the rainy weather, their enthusiasm at returning to school was palpable, and I, too, felt excited about being able to spend time in their school community this year.
Yesterday the pre-school and kindergarten students arrived for their first day. Their transition to school was not without tears and several emotional breakdowns – for many of the students, this was their first experience being in a school. I found that I could relate to their nervousness as well, as I continue to figure out my place in the school community. But just as I know these young students will soon feel at home in school, I too, will soon become comfortable working with the school psychologists, teachers, and staff there.
This year my practicum takes place in a large, urban charter school, serving students in preschool through grade 6. This is the school’s second year in a new building, and the facilities are impressive. I’m glad the sun has returned so the students can enjoy recess outside on the gorgeous new playground!