“When a connection is real…”

By Alexis Masingill

When I started at Little Owl, I was so excited and nervous about making a good impression with the teachers and families. Carroll and I were already friends, so that was helpful. But making new connections is hard when you come into a group that has already been acclimated. I remember meeting Chelsea on the yard under the Olive tree. We discovered we had a lot in common; we both went to Orange Coast College, lived in San Francisco, traveled abroad, and the list went on. Every time I was in the classroom with Chelsea, she would make me laugh with her witty comments. When Kaileigh and I found out that we were going to be paired with her for the Seedling classroom, we were both excited. And it felt mutual from Chelsea, which made our days together so much richer. She was quintessentially the “mama bear” of our classroom. With her many years at Little Owl, and having her daughter Harper in the Acorn room, it was clear that the Seedling community were the lucky ones. Every time Chelsea ran morning meeting, I was so impressed with how she communicated expectations and set the tone of the day.

Our Seedlings always enjoy gathering before lunch to hear her sing Brown Squirrel, Here Comes Uncle Jessie, A-Tooty-Ta, Tommy Thumb, and “The Pie Song” with us. The work that she does in the classroom is fantastic as well. She has taken on so many different plans that would truly provoke the children’s imagination and creativity from stories, to self portraits. It is all wonderful to see as a co-learner. Chelsea’s ability to rise to any occasion or challenge is helpful in those moments of struggle. But what I will take away from her is a sense of work ethic and honesty. We have had so many laughs and smiles were especially contagious. Her energy is just what we needed every day. Aside from seeing her as a co-teacher, witnessing the sweet relationship between her and Harper is so very special as well. Chelsea…thank you. You brought us “joy like a fountain.”

We love you and will miss you!

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