Friday, June 2, 2017

It's a Wrap!



I awoke just after 4 am, as I often do, but the list in my head prevented me from going back to sleep.  I checked my email for three papers that are overdue, and entirely too important to me, because their very existence will determine whether their authors pass or fail my class. By 4:13, I was writing a letter to one student, requested by a parent more weeks ago than I care to mention.  I'm living in denial, as I do every year, because today is the last day of school. The Class of 2017 will graduate this evening and tears will be shed as I watch another group of humans leave the hallowed halls of Donegal to go forth and make the world a better place.  

Summertime, and the Living is Easy...

Effective today, I can eat lunch, taking time to both talk and chew, rather than inhaling sustenance in 18 minutes while wondering about the ingredients in the 2, 3, 4 Bean Salad.  I can choose what to eat based upon what I would LIKE to eat, rather than which line in the food court has the fewest members.  I can be present in my discussion at lunch with colleagues, rather than having half of my mind rewriting the lesson that I'm teaching after lunch to be more effective or meaningful.  Today and Monday are reserved for end of the year "professional development," coveted days where teachers get to choose where to eat, and with whom they'd like to dine.  Coveted time.

Effective next week, I can read a book of my choice.  In reality, the choice will probably be something to prep for next year, and not the beach novel that requires the anonymity of an e reader to protect my reputation, lest someone catch me reading something that is nothing more than a guilty pleasure.

In a few hours, the annual senior parade will circle the high school, with the seniors showing their individuality, creativity, and togetherness simultaneously for one of the last times.  They'll pelt candy at our heads, and blow kazoos and air horns and bells with the intensity of the Whos Down in Whoville when the Grinch returns the gifts.

And while this is all happening, we teachers will be simultaneously sorting the contents of our desk, tossing and organizing, and planning for next year.  We'll be setting aside the books that we dragged to school but never read  to take HOME, hoping to find time this summer.  We'll be finding the "evidence" of our effectiveness for Domains 1 and 4 to scan and present to our administrators for our end of year evaluations.

And, at least this teacher, will be gathering a stack of senior photos, notes, and memories to take home for that scrapbook that I might take time to add to this summer, celebrating an extraordinary group of students leaving the nest for the last time. 

Congratulations, Class of 2017!