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Large class size a challenge

September 02, 2007|By JENNIFER FITCH

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While doing playground duty Wednesday, Bobbi Blubaugh had a heartwarming exchange with a former student.

Stephanie was one of Blubaugh's kindergarten students, and now is in fifth grade at Fairview Elementary School.

The girl was swinging when she spotted Blubaugh.

"She's the best teacher I ever, ever had," Stephanie told a friend.

Blubaugh has been teaching in the Waynesboro Area School District for 24 years. She has taught kindergarten as well as first, third and fifth grades.

The Millersville (Pa.) University graduate chose to study education because she had treasured relationships with nieces and nephews.

"It was mainly my enjoyment of them that turned me toward education," Blubaugh said.

Blubaugh said she is nervous that, with a class of 27, she might not reach each child in the way that best meets his or her needs.

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"Rapport with my fifth-graders is extraordinarily important, and I'm fearful I won't have enough time in our busy day to lend a listening ear as often as I'd like in order to satisfy their needs and desires," she wrote in an e-mail.

It is important to reach the children academically and personally to aid achievement and preparedness for sixth grade, Blubaugh said.

"My personal challenge in this 2007-08 school year, therefore, will be to 'reach out' with extra long arms and 'touch' each student," she said.

Blubaugh is married and has three children of her own.

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