Too cool for the likes of me, or tag with eighth graders

2014-05-04 13.02.41

“O frabjous day! Callooh! Callay!”

Seventy!
It was seventy degrees out today, and sunny! Callooh, callay, indeed!

The kids did round two of three of MCAS this morning. The boredom almost lulled me to sleep, but they were just squirrelly enough to need my attention, and keep me awake. I have a good group–minus one kid who I’d say is a knucklehead, but he’s so entertaining that I can’t help but love him–so the time is as painless as standardized testing can be.

We tested from first period through fourth, and then on our eighth grade schedule, we had fifth period, lunch, and then sixth and seventh. My fifth period class gamely dove into the silent reading we had scheduled, but “spring is the mischief in me,” and I couldn’t focus. The sun was coming in through our window-wall; the sky was blue; we’d been sitting, mostly silent, for four hours… I put my book down, and said, “Let’s go play outside!”

We were only outside for about 20-25 minutes, but it was enough time for Sarah to somersault down the hill, Julie and I to chat about her dad’s tattoo, a quick conversation about whether or not it was meadow-pause or menopause (the girls brought it up, not me), and a rousing boys’ game of tag. It was enough time for me to feel warm, and enjoy watching them be kids.

Eighth graders are an odd breed. They are a balance of too cool to be hanging out with the likes of me, and, well, somersaults and tag. I’ve mentioned this before, but my life would not have been as good without these on-the-cusp kids.

When my fifth period thinks back to me, I hope they’ll remember what I will about today. Sarah’s somersaults, Andrew slipping as he reached out to tag a slithery Jamie, and Amanda, with a chain of dandelions woven into her hair. I hope they’ll remember that while there are things we must do, there also must always be room for play. Love you, kiddos.

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