As a parent, I know the importance of spending time with my child, listening, and leading them down the path of life.  As a teacher, I see the importance of spending time with all children, especially those who maybe don’t have adults in their life to mentor them.  I spend a lot of time in classrooms during the school year teaching children and guest speaking during summer reading programs.  My husband, on the other hand, doesn’t always have that flexibility in his work schedule.  However, this month our son was “special person of the week” at preschool, and my husband took the time to visit his classroom and share some valuable lessons about life and his work.

Daddy Day - Voices from the Ville

Here he is! Husband, father, role model.

Preschoolers have a short attention span, but, in a few minutes, my husband was able to share meaningful lessons about his job as a golf course superintendent.  He talked to the students about the tools and vehicles he uses on a daily basis, how he has to be kind to the earth and animals, and how he tries to work and share with others.  He also took time to play a game with them.

What I saw happening in the classroom was completely out of the box for my husband.  He went out of his comfort zone to be with little people.  He patiently answered their questions.  He absorbed all their giggles and wiggles and cheered them on during the game.  I heard deep belly laughter and saw big eyes as they listened and watched.

Later, my husband told me how appreciative he was for this opportunity to speak to his son’s class, and reach out to other children in the community.  He said that the experience made him realize  that he needs to take time to do that more often.  My son thought his dad was cool, and so did his classmates!

I know that work and life can keep us all busy.  What I want my son to remember most about his childhood and his parents is that we took time to spend with him, play with him, and listen to him.  June is an opportune month for fathers, grandfathers, uncles, and all parents to spend time mentoring the children in our lives and communities.


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Debra Barry

Debra Barry


Teacher. Writer. Mom. Wife. Domestic Engineer. Shoe Shopper. Coffee Lover. Reader. Runner.

I share my life with my husband, Chauncey, two step-sons, Kevin and Alex, five-year-old son, Brady, and our dog, Lucy. I have spent the last 18 years educating children.