Saying Goodbye: Through the Eyes of Second Graders.

Today is my last day at my school here in Alcalá de Henares. We've had a few quiet teacher work days without the kids around. I've been performing various tasks to wrap up the year (interviewing teachers regarding the English program in preschool and typing up a document, making flash cards to demonstrate the present continuous tense, etc.) and enjoying speaking more Spanish with the teachers over coffee across the street. I'm sad to be leaving, because not only am I hugely sentimental, but I also have enjoyed my job this year (even in the midst of many, many tonterías). I already miss those little niños--sticky hands and all. I don't know where they will end up or where life will lead, but I hope all the best for them. And because el mundo es un pañuelo (it's a small world, afterall), I hope I see some of them again one day. Because you never know.

Here's how my super-sweet second graders (and their teachers!) said goodbye to me (in addition to hugs, kisses, and "te echaré de menos MUCHO"s): 

They gave me this very thoughtful book filled with pictures of me teaching, a class photo, and their own hand-written notes and drawings. I couldn't be happier!

They gave me this very thoughtful book filled with pictures of me teaching, a class photo, and their own hand-written notes and drawings. I couldn't be happier!

Needless to say, this was one of the best English students in the class!

Needless to say, this was one of the best English students in the class!

Finally, they know that I'm from the U.S., not from England...

Finally, they know that I'm from the U.S., not from England...

...or do they??? There were a suspicious amount of double-decker buses, British flags, and Big Bens in this book. Sigh.

...or do they??? There were a suspicious amount of double-decker buses, British flags, and Big Bens in this book. Sigh.

Also, a Swedish flag appeared. (I also love "Have a good weekends." You too, kiddo.)

Also, a Swedish flag appeared. (I also love "Have a good weekends." You too, kiddo.)

Sharks and turtles also made an appearance!

Sharks and turtles also made an appearance!

Favorite motivational quote ever: "You are your favorite teacher." 

Favorite motivational quote ever: "You are your favorite teacher." 

Also motivational. Words every teacher wants to hear (even when you know they say it to every teacher).

Also motivational. Words every teacher wants to hear (even when you know they say it to every teacher).

I'm flying away. (Not yet, though.)

I'm flying away. (Not yet, though.)

The last two photos are so funny because the first one gets my pixie cut just about right, and the second one says in a nutshell what we prepared for all year long. Sorry for the poor photo quality, by the way...I just wanted to make sure I got this post up before time gets away from me. 

I'll look back on this year grateful for the experiences I had and the people I met. I hope that in some small way, I made a contribution to the school and to the kids I worked with. I know that I'll forever be a different person for having spent the past nine months here, and for that I am so thankful.