Forty Shades of Green
Golden Days

Teacher's Pet


In first grade, I had a really . . . well, disappointing teacher. (First grade was my first experience with school, by the way; my school district didn't have kindergarten when I was a child.) Her name was Mrs. Wolters, and she was both "old" AND old-school.  She was overly focused on hygiene, neatness, and adamant about not-talking-with-your-neighbor.  She had no sense of humor or fun -- which, really, seem like requirements for first grade teachers, don't you think?

I felt cheated.

And I wanted BETTER in second grade.

There were 3 sections of each grade in my elementary school.  And two of the second grade teachers were young and energetic and 1960s-cool - with their bubble hair-dos and shorter skirts and everything. And, well . . . then there was Mrs. Boline.  "Old" and "scary-looking."  I DEFINITELY didn't want Mrs. Boline!   She looked worse than humorless Mrs. Wolters.  And the stories the third graders told? Oh, shudder.  I did NOT want to be in Mrs. Boline's class.

When the class lists went up for second grade?


You guessed it.

Mrs. Boline.

Who turned out to be the kindest, most patient, perfect-for-me teacher ever.

Second Grade Class

Oh, Mrs. Boline.

I loved you so!

And I still remember the things you taught me . . . 

Be kind to everyone.

Trying your best is the Most Important Thing.

Don't laugh at others' expense.

We are all good at something.

Make sure to get a drink of water after recess.

Crying does not mean you're a baby -- it just means you're feeling strong feelings.

Sometimes the world is a scary place, but if we're kind to each other everything will be okay.

Make sure your handwriting is legible.

Thanks, Mrs. Boline!  You were THE BEST!

(Did you find me in the class photo?  Bottom row, 2nd from right.  My mom was really proud of that up-do . . . painstakingly created just for Picture Day!)


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I spotted the up do! You are working it! Yay for Mrs. Boline...and she was ahead of her time...have a glass of water??? Who knew?! :-)


That was definitely a remarkable do! What a remarkable teacher! A teacher who leaves students with such wonderful life lessons is the best!


Okay, I am insanely jealous of the up do! And, oh my gosh - also the phrase never judge a book by its cover springs to mind. Brava to Mrs. Boline!!


Mrs. Boline sounds wonderful, and I have a fervent wish that everyone could learn and remember the important things she taught you. Incredible teacher and incredible up-do!


Oh, my, I never had an up-do for school photos! I do recall lots of foam rollers, tho. ;) Yay, Mrs. Boline!! I wish my scary old 2nd grade teacher (Mrs. Pynch) had turned out the same!


My 2nd grade teacher was just awful & didn't want to teach us. She had been brought back from retirement to help teach all of us "baby boomers". Your Mrs. Boline sounds just as wonderful as my 1st grade teacher, Mrs. McClelland. I have some similar class pictures, except we always had messy hair-they always took our pictures right after recess!


A remarkable mother and a great experience for second grade you!


What a lovely woman she sounds like! Makes all the difference, especially when you are only a little kid.


Oh I love this post! I have some very similar looking class photos!


Mrs. Boline sounds a lot like Mrs. Sykes, my first grade teacher. I'm so glad you got that experience even if it was delayed a year. I did go to kindergarten but it was private kindergarten, we didn't have public kindergarten in MA back then. I had a great experience and was reading before I hit first grade thanks to Mrs. Wentzel and Mrs. Duhamel.


what a wonderful experience - sometimes what we get is just want we need! (and I LOVE the up-do!)

Lydia S

Such a great story-that early experience might have been different with a different teacher.

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