School starts Monday. I’m ready, or at least I think I’m ready.
I was at school working in my classroom Thursday and again, Friday afternoon – I have a list of to dos before Monday morning and my first official day of school – faculty meetings and administrative details before the kids arrive next Thursday.
Thursday, I was busy masking a line from the back of the room to the front of the room so I could paint a 3” wide blue line – I’ll be using it for a timeline 1750 to present. Jose, the head custodian, will paint it this week and I’ll start posting events as they come up in class. I had O with me on Thursday and she organized my project boxes – boxes of supplies groups can use in class. We went school supply shopping Monday and visited her school Tuesday and she got her schedule and organized her locker. She was a big help Thursday and I owe her big time.
Friday I met with my science colleagues and we planned. Afterwards, I made lists and organized a few bins and drawers. I’ll stay late Monday and Tuesday and work on a few more details before having Wednesday all t myself to get the room ready for students on Thursday.
As for today and tomorrow – the days before school starts, the final weekend before school: Today there is o’s softball practice and W’s varsity football picnic. And, of course yard work and my desk.
While I was driving to school yesterday morning, I realized there were several things about school that I missed this summer and several things that I did not miss.
- Listening to news radio and NPR – when school is in session I listen to the news and stay current. During the summer I will catch the news on television, I actually prefer the radio and the of NPR and no commercials.
- A regular schedule of a place to be at a certain time. I get up early, at least most days. But, I can waste time and distract myself quite easily. During the school year, I have to be dressed and out of the house before 7:00 or I’ll be late. The last three years, I’ve been driving W and there were a few days when we didn’t make the deadline – he’s driving to school this year and I’ll miss dropping him off on my way.
- I missed the morning commute and watching the sunrise. Most mornings during the school year, I can see the sunrise. At this time of the year, the sun rises early about 6:00 AM this morning but that’ll shift. In a month, it’ll rise at 6:32 AM. By December 14th, it’ll rise at 7:12 AM, which is really 8:12 AM, adjusted for the shift back to standard time from daylight savings time.
- Also, I’ve been driving to the same destination for over 16 years and last year I found an alternative drive – through a forest preserve and open prairie – no houses or buildings for mile and half stretch of road. The new route even trimmed several minutes from the commute, most days. More importantly, it reduced the stress of the last few stoplights and congested road before turning in to the school parking lot and starting my day.
I did not miss……
- The afternoon commute. My commute is counter-commute in the morning, in other words the heaviest traffic is on the other side of the road going the other way when I am travelling to school. It’s much different in the afternoon. Traffic is heavier and a morning commute that take 25-30 minutes can take 40-45 minutes on a good day. It seems everyone is travelling at the same time and we all want our space on the road. I don’t miss the afternoon commute and frankly it’s my least favorite part of the day.
- I am at loss for more than #1
Yesterday, the 7th and 8th graders got their class schedules and locker assignments. There were kids and parents all over the school – walking around and finding where their classrooms would be for the new year. Our school has never done it that way – students got their schedules, lockers, and books the day school started. I was one of a few teachers in the building working in my classroom and I had several kids pop in to tell me they had me – they all seemed very excited and I could feel the energy. I also had a few kids and parents pop in to ask a question – where, why, how.
I also got to see a couple of former students who were back with younger brothers and sisters and that is always exciting, even when they’ve grown a foot and I don’t recognize them, or remember their name, right away.
AND, There are parts of summer I’ll miss and parts I won’t miss. Summer is really a dress rehearsal for retirement, or winning the lottery. I have a better chance at retirement, but I can still dream, can’t I?
That’s how it goes. You gotta take the good with the bad – it’s a balance. Actually, the good parts usually outweigh the bad parts; when it’s the opposite, it’s time to change course.
Today is gonna be a great day, I know it and I can feel it. For moment, I have a some yard work before the picnic, and two more days and it’s back to school. But, for now it’s still summer and I’ll work on making it endless and listen to the strains of the Beach Boys while I weed the path. Making the Days Count, one day at a time, pulling weeds, folding laundry, and cleaning off my desk.
What chores are on your list today?
The clip is the trailer for the surfer movie Endless Summer, not directly relates to the Beach Boys album Endless Summer. Still fun to watch and listen to the soundtrack.