Every new academic year brings with it unique challenges.

But not many have ever thought of that grade which involves a transition from early childhood to junior education.

Grade One is a special phase in a learner’s life.

It not only requires great psycho-social skills, it also needs a profound appreciation by the teacher.

Miss Norah Munyanyiwa, a Grade One teacher, says what makes this a unique grade is that it is a transition phase from early childhood to serious learning.

“This is a very challenging moment in a pupil’s life. The most difficult part is that if a child fails to grasp concepts here, it might be a permanent challenge,” said Miss Munyanyiwa.

It also takes a special relationship which must be cultivated between the teacher and pupils.

Some come from different backgrounds and circumstances might be very individualistic even when group tasks are demanded.

Others may simply choose to walk away and peep through windows.

Still others are still soft and might break down into tears quite often.

In all that, the Grade One teacher has to assume the role of a teacher and semi-parent and it’s such moments where true dedication is called upon to be exhibited.

“You must cultivate a very special relationship with the children. it is simply not about learning, it goes beyond that…,” Miss Munyanyiwa added.

For the Grade One teacher, it goes beyond just conducting a lesson.

It is also a character building phase.

It speaks to maternal or paternal instincts which should be part of the “curriculum,” in this grade.

From the confessions of a Grade One teacher, one can simply conclude that this is a period anchored on a teacher whose anchor is a labour of love.