Senior Connections Senior Connections Aug. 2018

Connecting Seniors Through News, Information, and Advertising August 2018 VOLUME 1 | NO. 1 Senior Connections HJ.COM GRAB ONE - FREE! Changing directions Glessing moves from teaching elementary students to seniors DEB COX-JOHNSON Correspondent Marnie Glessing has a new work life, career and pur- pose she loves, but it wasn’t necessarily easy getting there. She loved her former work and vocation also, but like many in today’s world, found herself leaving her fi eld due to circumstances beyond her control. Glessing moved to Howard Lake from Faribault in 1978, when she got a call from the St James Lutheran school offering her a teaching position. A graduate of Concordia College in St. Paul, class of 1978, she was familiar with St. James due to the fact that she had com- pleted her student teaching requirements there. She en- joyed that experience, and chose to accept. She made the move from Faribault the same year, and began her fi rst year at a school and in a community she would grow to love. Initially, she taught third and fourth grade in what was called a “double room.” She also kept busy coach- ing athletics for four seasons in that year – volleyball, basketball, soccer, and softball. In the summer, she added playing softball to her schedule. She met her future husband, Neil Glessing, at St. James Lutheran Church, where he served as an usher. They got married in 1987. Glessing lived with Neil and his family on the family farm, where she discovered that she had a lot to learn. And learn she did, as Neil gradually introduced her to the ways of a dairy farm. Initially, she found herself “frightened of the steers,” but her confi dence in her farming knowledge and skills grew over the years. She enjoyed the out-of-doors and helped out as much as her teaching schedule allowed. In 1991, their son, David, was born, and he has gradu- ally taken over the management and daily operations of the farm. A long and rewarding teaching career After the fi rst year, when she taught two grades in the double room, enrollment had grown, and she taught only third grade for several years. Later, she taught eighth Marnie Glessing (right) spent much of her career as an elementary school teacher. She is now coordinating activities for seniors in Dassel. She is pictured with Clari Mattson. grade for a year. Following that, she taught seventh grade for three years. In 1994, she moved to teaching second grade, and this became her last and greatest love through the remainder of her 39 years at the school. Her favorite things about teaching second grade were watching the students grow and achieve, and witnessing the “light bulb” moments when something important sank in or became clear. She also enjoyed what she de- scribed as the “general innocence” of children that age. Glessing fondly remembers watching over her class in the bus line at the end of each school day. She made it a practice to lightly touch each student’s head and say, Senior Connections PHOTO BY DEB COX-JOHNSON “God bless you,” as a way of ending their school day. One day, one of her second-grade boys returned the ges- ture, reaching up high to lightly touch Glessing’s head and also saying, “God bless you.” She was very moved. And she and the child’s parents were also surprised that he continued this ritual for the rest of the school year. Second-graders are uninhibited in expressing affec- tion, and another regular joy was getting “lots of hugs.” Over the years, she has also had the pleasure of watch- ing students grow up, move out into the world, get mar- More CHANGING DIRECTIONS on Pg 2 is distributed to: Annandale | Buffalo | Cokato | Darwin | Dassel | Delano | Glencoe | Howard Lake | Hutchinson | Kimball | Lester Prairie Litchfi eld | Loretto | Maple Lake | Maple Plain | Mayer | Montrose | Mound | New Germany | Norwood Young America Rockford | Silver Lake | South Haven | St. Bonifacius | Waconia | Watertown | Waverly | Winsted