Steve the Crossing Guard

There are teachers, and there are remarkable teachers.  Steve the Crossing Guard is one of the remarkable teachers, and he doesn’t teach in a classroom. He teaches on the street at a school crossing.  The children at his crossing will often learn far more than they learn in the classroom.

I got an email from Steve the Crossing Guard at 6:39 AM.  It was titled,
“Boston Massacre 3/5/1770”.

The text simply said:

Yes, you bet we’ll discuss it, within the hour…

Have a great day!


This is exactly what Steve the Crossing Guard does.  He is so excited for what’s to come, because he has planned questions and challenges for the students. The anticipation of knowing and then wanting to pass it on is the greatest feeling. Really.

At 8:01 PM that night, he emailed:


So much history tomorrow: Michelangelo’s bday; fall of the Alamo; Dred Scott case. But, I’d be remiss if I didn’t focus on a huge event, Nabisco’s introduction of the Oreo cookie in 1912. I bought 2 pkgs, 72 cookies, to pass out tomorrow morning. Isn’t history wonderful?


Happy Birthday, OREO cookie
March 6, 5:37 PM

I mentioned Michaelangelo in the afternoon, the kids were pretty much aware of his.  But honestly, OREOs won the day.

If I remember, I’m going to talk about Michaelangelo again tomorrow morning and ask, “what do we need to do to be remembered almost 450 years later.”

This is becoming work, I have to prep at night for the next day.

Have a great day, Jennie!


March 6, 9:51 PM

It was pretty good. A few mentioned that they had studied it in middle school, so, there was some familiarity. However, some were impressed, or surprised, that it was J Adams who defended them. I didn’t tell them the outcome of the trial. I suggested they find out for themselves. I’ll follow-up on that.

Jennie, if you were at my crossing, you would be so enthusiastic that we’d all be mentally tired listening to you saying, ‘more, more, ask me more’.  I would be drained trying to satisfy your appetite.

I’m beat. Gnight, my friend!


They Teach Me
March 7, 8:24 PM

Such a good laugh starting the day with a high school brother/sister. I asked what Michelangelo would have tweeted when he finished the ceiling of the Sistine Chapel, if Twitter was available. The boy, Lewis, said “LOL, It’s Done!”  We had good belly laughs.

But another boy, a Senior, informed me that Michelangelo was made to do the ceiling by the Pope and it took 15 years. I was ignorant about that but loved the info.

A few minutes later, a high school girl started educating me on the ‘radium girls’, a fascinating story of corporate cover up and courage. It’s the play this Spring but I’m getting the book. Check it out on Wicki.

Any day that begins with a laugh is a good day.

Have a great Friday, Jennie.


P.S. Friday’s word is PETULANT

March 9, 7:18 PM

These kids are anything but ‘petulant’, and I told them so. Also told them to use the word in a sentence 10 times and they’ll remember it forever, or, until they get old, like me.

They listened (and I have to go fast to get it in) and I’m sure some will remember it. But, they were interested and that was rewarding.

Thank you, Steve.  Beam me over to your crossing.  I want to be there, too.


About Jennie

I have been teaching preschool for over thirty years. This is my passion. I believe that children have a voice, and that is the catalyst to enhance or even change the learning experience. Emergent curriculum opens young minds. It's the little things that happen in the classroom that are most important and exciting. That's what I write about. I am highlighted in the the new edition of Jim Trelease's bestselling book, "The Read-Aloud Handbook" because of my reading to children. My class has designed quilts that hang as permanent displays at both the National Liberty Museum in Philadelphia, and the Fisher House at the Boston VA Hospital.
This entry was posted in Expressing words and feelings, history, Inspiration, preschool, Quotes, storytelling, Teaching young children, young children and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

73 Responses to Steve the Crossing Guard

  1. Ritu says:

    Steve sounds amazing!

  2. beetleypete says:

    Steve is an inspirational as ever. It would be just so easy not to bother. But Steve bothers.
    I know about the radium dials on those ‘luminous clocks’, and the terrible effects on the women who made them. That’s a story that needs to keep being told.
    Best wishes, Pete.

  3. ksbeth says:

    i absolutely love the people around us who are the natural teachers, instilling a love of learning and sharing in all they meet

  4. Darlene says:

    He is amazing. Wish he had been around when I went to school.

  5. Steve is an inspiration. Thanks for the report.

  6. The Hook says:

    The School of the Street is one every citizen needs to attend,
    Steve rocks.

  7. Oh what a beautiful man.. I remember you speaking of him before.. Such an impact I am sure he has on all the students that cross the road with him..
    I still remember my infant school crossing lady, always laughing and often with a sweet in her pocket.. 😀 ❤ Enjoy your Sunday Jenny. ❤

  8. Jennie, wow…what an incredible man and he does an incredible service as a teacher; at a time when teachers are so busy with paperwork that must be done daily-that barely have time to teach as much as they would otherwise. I am reblogging! 🙂

  9. Reblogged this on K. D. Dowdall and commented:
    Steve the Crossing Guard, on teacher-at-large, and his amazing gift to children.

  10. srbottch says:

    Jennie, your so kind with your words and supportive of my efforts. As for being there, let me tell you that you already are. Your spirit and enthusiasm motivates me,and, I’m sure, others who witness the great work you do in your real classroom. I’ll keep you updated on ‘stuff’ we do at the ‘School of the Street’, my Curbside Classroom. 😉🤓

  11. I love reading Steve’s posts. He has the same passion you have for teaching and an open mind for still learning. That’s what life is all about. Thanks for sharing your notes from him.

  12. We need more people like Steve.

  13. I love this, Jennie. It just shows what a little creativity, caring, and enthusiasm can contribute to the world. You and the kids are lucky to have Steve. 🙂

  14. I agree, Jennie. Steve is amazing and fun.

  15. Dan Antion says:

    What a gift Steve gives to the community.

  16. Kids are the best reasons for having a future….Everything looks new and wondrous to them — how can we not want more of that?

  17. dgkaye says:

    What an amazing guy! I’m sure every crosswalk could use an informative guide like him. ❤

  18. We live and learn in many amazing ways, especialliy through love and charity. They give back so much in return.. ❤

  19. In this world of ordinary people, I am so glad there is someone like Steve the Crossing Guard!

  20. Sarah says:

    Wow! Steve sounds amazing!! And he’s so right – history is just awesome! Wonderful to hear about such a special person, Jennie! 😄

  21. I’d go with you Jennie! 😁

  22. Wow! This i think is a valuable way of teaching too. Learning in small pieces is perfect. Michael

  23. What an inspiring man! We should all be so lucky as to have a friend like Steve!

  24. Reblogged this on By the Mighty Mumford and commented:

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