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Most people do not look forward to Mondays. The weekend is officially over and there are a full five days of the typical workweek ahead. For students, Monday brings a new round of classes, tests, and homework. I never thought that Monday would be something to look forward to, but boy was I wrong; over the past 3 months I have come to love Mondays.

You read that right. Not like, love. When I realized that, I was just as surprised as you are. I expected to learn a lot during my City Year experience, but truly loving a job to the point where it no longer feels like a job was not one of the lessons I was anticipating. The most surprising part is that I did not even have to try. A few weeks into the school year I realized that I looked forward to Monday mornings and was disappointed the further from Monday I got.

Even though I cannot pinpoint the exact reason for my love of Mondays, I can definitely think of a few that may explain it. One of my students always comes to fill me in on his weekend when he gets off the bus. Another student has surprised me a few times by sharing a summary of what he read while he was home. There’s a third student who stops by in the morning just to say hello on his way to his other classes. These are a few of the highlights, but there is so much more I could say about how much my students motivate me.

I have the unique opportunity to learn just as much from my students as they learn from me, and let me tell you, I have learned a lot. As I prepare for the spring semester, I have plenty of great moments to reflect on from the fall and I can only hope that the spring brings a whole new set of exciting moments and challenges to overcome. I am looking forward to all of my Mondays at Spruce!

AmeriCorps member and author Nicole Cooney proudly serves on the AT&T team at H. Grady Spruce High School

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