Dog Days, Not Just Afternoons

Posted on March 2, 2012Filed Under Seventh Grade Behavior, Teaching | 3 Comments

These are the dog days of the school year. It’s that time after the three-day-weekend fest of January and February (Monday after Christmas break, MLK day, end of semester teacher work day, Lincoln’s birthday, Washington’s birthday), but before spring break. It’s when everybody starts getting sick of each other, and the kids start cycling between bang-the-stick-on-the-desk sporty to bang-the-stick-on-the-desk lethargic… almost daily. It’s when you start seeing a lot of subs in the lunchroom, and kids in detention. It’s when the VP has to intrude on all the history classes and “remind students of the rules around here.”

“It was only supposed to be 15 minutes, but Mr. SpongeBob ended up talking for 45 minutes. He kept walking out the door, and then would think of something to say again. And again. And again.”

“Welcome to my world. Now you understand why I get crabby when I have to go to a faculty meeting. Or listen to the announcements.”

“It was great. Mr. Valentine got all mad, and we got out of the quiz we were supposed to take.”


Right now, we’re four weeks from a two week break. Our school board doesn’t like the two-week break that the teachers have voted for for the past three years, and this is the last one. They wrote it into the new contract that the board has control over the schedule, and they made it clear that we’re going back to the one-weeker. The two-week thing has been kinda fun; it’s nice going skiing or whatever when everyone else is back in school, but I’m sure going to like getting out by June 7 next year. I’d rather start later though. Whatever happened to starting after Labor Day?  In Virginia, schools aren’t allowed to start before Labor Day. They call it the amusement park law. There are several major amusement parks in Virginia, and I guess they were losing millions of dollars each year as schools moved start dates earlier and earlier. Lobbying ensued. Et voila!

Maybe that’s a way out of California’s budget nightmare.

Kara over in the comments section says she’s facing a ten week stretch of dog days. Ouch. When’s spring break? In May? Double ouch. Glad to hear that we might be taking the edge off a little.

Here’s another whopper from the other day to add to the lying list. It started with…

“Ralph, didn’t you get glasses a few weeks ago?”

He was another one I called out for needing eye-wear. Right again. I think that makes four this year. I still offer $10 to anyone who proves me wrong about the glasses call. Anyway this one, after getting glasses and marveling for awhile at the world he hadn’t really seen before, just stopped wearing them. Don’t know why–maybe it was all to much in high def, but I notice him squinting again.

“Did you lose them? Are they in your locker? At home? You need to be wearing them.”

“I don’t need my glasses any more.”

“Oh yeah?”

“My eyes got fixed.”

“So when did you have laser surgery? You haven’t missed any days of school lately. What did the eye doctor say?”

“I don’t know. I didn’t go. They just got better. I tried real hard, and they got better.”

“Could you do that with your grade?”



3 Responses to “Dog Days, Not Just Afternoons”

  1. Heather on March 6th, 2012 8:05 am

    Your Virginian teacher blog friend here – schools can start before Labor Day if we qualify for a waiver from the state. The waiver is based on number of snow days used the previous school year. We had flurries from an Alberta clipper for about an hour yesterday morning, and it was amazing how many schools closed for the full day. Our superintendents weren’t born yesterday. A bill went before the house to try to do away with the Kings’ Dominion Law, but did not succeed; here are the deets from our local daily:

  2. mrC on March 8th, 2012 8:42 pm

    Snow days? Kids here think you guys get “get out of jail free” cards on those days. Me, I couldn’t cope with actual weather. A couple of days in a row of rain, and I’m going crazy. I would love to go back to starting after Labor Day, even if it meant finishing toward the end of June. Our weather is a whole lot better here in the fall (sunny, warm, no fog) than in the spring (wiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiindy) or early summer (foggy ’til noon). The last time we saw any real snow close to us was when I was student teaching 25 years ago. They canceled school on my first day.

  3. Mrs. M~ on March 9th, 2012 9:57 am

    I WISH snow days were “get out of jail free days.” Here in South Dakota we have lots of late starts, early outs, and snow days . . . obviously! Our snow days used to be tacked on at the end of the year, but then some genius decided to implement a tiered system within our school calendar. So if we have a snow day before certain dates, we lose our days off for President’s Day, Easter Monday, etc. The kids are always total bears on days we have school that were supposed to be holidays. Grrrrrrr!

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