Today I got a reward: a hug from an 8th grader.
Since I teach elementary music, I only get to see the musical accomplishments of my little kids. And I DO love my job. But most often I get 1st grade hugs, 3rd grade jokes, 6th grade attitude, and everything else in between.
But today I got a reward. Several Jr. High kids came back to do a presentation for my 6th graders about band and choir in Jr. High: what it will be like, what they have to know or not know, is it possible to do band and a sport, if you have to already know how to play an instrument before starting, etc. Lots of questions, and some performances as a preview.
As they walked into the gym, several of the guys that had gone to my campus and that I had for all 6 years of elementary school, well, they lit up. The exclaimed my name, they smiled, and I got up and gave them a hug.
It was SO rewarding to see them sing, to see them enjoy singing, and to see them grown much more than when I had them. It was good to see them, but it was even more good to see how they've grown.
A much better reward then I ever expected.