Join me this month as I write a slice of my life each day this March and join many others sharing slices at twowritingteachers.com. My students will also be slicing this month and you can find links to their daily blogs HERE.
"Did you get hit in the back of the head with a snowball?" the front office secretary asked as I walked in from recess today.
My right hand reached up and felt the mass of wet sticky flakes attached to my hair. I wiped my hair a couple of times, the flakes almost instantly transforming to water droplets as I answered, "Maybe we should have had indoor recess today."
The rule at our school is below twenty degrees or in blizzard conditions, we do indoor recess, or as I like to call it, HELL. I would rather endure almost anything than the pain of getting the 150 students, ages 8-14 to take their shoes off, run around without causing injuries, deal with the racket, and finally getting shoes back on to go to class. It takes so much energy and voice and herding of cats to make it feel like anything close to recess happened.
So today, while I monitored the lunchroom, and watched the snow fly sideways in the twenty mile-per-hour wind, and plaster itself to everything in it's path, I thought, "It's not below twenty. We are going outside." As students came to ask me where recess would be, I said with assurance that we could handle fifteen minutes in the elements and, "You should be dressed for it anyway."
Fifteen seconds after exiting the building and walking into the wind, my blue fleece was completely white. My sunglasses were a mass of wet, and three-quarters of the students were walking backwards towards the playground and field. Another teacher on duty ran to his car to get his snowboarding jacket. A student tripped over a shrub she didn't see while walking backwards. Students created huddle piles. The football game never advanced past the midfield mark due to the wind. Mammoths lumbered across the frozen tundra and glaciers formed in the packing lot.
No one threw a snowball, but perhaps I would have gotten the message sooner if they had.
Playground photo credit: <a href="http://www.flickr.com/photos/bensonkua/6585852763/">Benson Kua</a> via <a href="http://photopin.com">photopin</a> <a href="http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/">cc</a>
Snowball fight photo credit: <ahref="http://www.flickr.com/photos/thethingsitdoes/7945245340/">thethingsitdoes</a> via <a href="http://photopin.com">photopin</a> <a href="http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc-sa/2.0/">cc</a>