Last Day of School
Last day of school. Work handed in. Tests taken. Time to move on. Time to move up. The anticipation grows in each student, in each classroom; it burgeons throughout the school. The walls seem to vibrate with excitement. The final bell rings. The kids rush out the doors: to freedom, to summer.
From time immemorial this excitement is a tradition, no matter what lies ahead. In long-gone days the kids worked on the farm or in a family store, were kept at home to care for younger children or help with chores. In recent years kids might get on the bus for sleep-away camp the day after school gets out and not return until the week before school begins again. Some kids might go from one specialized day camp to another. Some might be free to invent their own fun. And sadly some might have only screen time, or hot apartments, and no school lunch. And still, “School’s Out” symbolizes freedom.
It’s no surprise that teachers feel the same anticipation and excitement of that last day of school, maybe even more than the students. The last month of school is a tough one: playing catch-up, testing and evaluation, programs, conferences, reports, reports cards. If it turns hot, it is a huge challenge to keep students engaged in learning. I know of no teacher who does not breathe a huge sigh of relief after the last kid walks out the door.
But for teachers there is still much to do. It is unique to teaching that each year comes to a definitive end, so there are papers to file, final reports to complete, bulletin boards to strip, room decorations to store for next year. There are books and furniture to inventory. And then, as do the students, the teachers take off for different summer activities: work, travel, study, downtime. Surprisingly soon, however, the teachers will reboot in order to begin a new year with totally different children.
School’s out. Drive carefully. Have a great summer.
© Dorothy C. Judd
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