Whine: It’s raining. Wahhh. I live where it rarely rains. The children here are used to playing outdoors everyday before school and at lunchtime. Today that won’t happen. It will make them a little crazy. Wahhh.
Before school I will open my classroom twenty-five minutes earlier than usual to students. Wahhh. I normally use that time to prepare for the day. It’s much more difficult to do that when students are in the room. They require attention, which I happily provide, but then other things are left undone. Wahhh.
Today is our computer lab day. That means that today I don’t get a prep period, since each classroom teacher is in charge of the lab for his or her class. Wahhh. No restroom break. No time to check email, make phone calls, scan homework, look ahead to the next lesson, or even just have a few minutes of quiet. Wahhh.
Then comes lunch. Immediately after the students eat I will pick them up from the cafeteria and return to the classroom with them. Wahhh. I won’t be able to catch my breath and enjoy some grown-up conversation. Instead I will run to the restroom (finally) and inhale my lunch and desperately try to make it back to the cafeteria in the allotted fifteen minutes. Wahhh. Then the squirrelly, hyperactive, anxious kids and I will spend the next few minutes in “relaxation” mode in the classroom. Wahhh.
By dismissal time we will have spent six hours and fifty-five minutes all together (with only a fifteen minute break). Wahhh. I don’t care how much you like spending time with ten-year olds, that’s a long time, especially when there are 34 of them and one of you. Wahhh.
At dismissal we will stand huddled together in a small covered area with the half the rest of the school waiting for parents to pick up. There will be more than usual, due to the weather, so it will go slowly, and kids will be so wound up that it will be noisy. The younger grades will be dismissed from the cafeteria, so there will be confusion about that. Wahhh.
After the children are gone, I will crave silence and solitude, but no, we have a meeting to learn the ins and outs of the brand spanking new standardized test we will be administering next month. Wahhh. Can teachers opt out? I don’t think they can. Wahhh.
My sweetheart says I should just show a filmstrip, and part of me agrees, but in this era of “data-driven” instruction and “high stakes” testing there’s no way I could do that. It will be teach, teach, teach, even when the kids and I all need a break. Wahhh.
Now I need to paste my game face on, remember to have a sense of humor, and give it my best. Thanks for listening, I feel a lot better. And who knows, maybe the sun will come out after all.