Tuesday, December 18, 2007

The Week Before Christmas at School

I wrote yesterday about the two hour delay we had at school. Apart from the snow, I suppose that is the last ordinary day of the calendar year...

Today the kids marched in the Christmas Parade that the city of Anawalt has each year. It's not much of a parade, but then it's not that much of a city. Don't get me wrong. It's a nice city. It's just small - maybe a few hundred people in the incorporated area.

We take the kids down the hill to where they get on the school buses and walk the quarter mile or so to the downtown block. The city's police car leads the parade, with the mayor inside. The city's fire department brings up the rear. The kids march by grades. Parents and grandparents, aunts, uncles and neighbors wave and take pictures. We walk around the block. The kids wave and sing songs. And we walk back up to the school.

The whole thing takes about 90 minutes.

Last year the kids all met Santa and got a present at the city hall. This year Santa came to the school after the parade...

Tomorrow is the Christmas program at the school. We'll pack the gym with parents and the kids will sign.

Thursday we're taking the kids to the movies - a reward for performance in the Accelerated Reader program. School buses will carry us the hour across the mountains to Mercer Mall in Bluefield. We'll watch Alvin and the Chipmunks (oh just shot me) and eat lunch at Chick Filet. Then we'll ride the yellow school buses back across the mountains and try not to lose our lunches on those twisty mountain roads. We're supposed to be back by 2pm and then class Christmas parties start at 2:30.

Friday there are no kids, but a few will show up for make up work. then there will be a faculty senate meeting and those sorts of things.

I have until Friday to make out a purchase order to spend $200. I can't seem to get that done.

Then it's 11 days off.

It's easy to think of this as a wasted week. But that begs the question of why we have schools. Sure it's about learning. But it's also about community and socialization.

We walked through a tradition today. Traditions are good (at least they can be) - even if they do interfer with instruction for a day.

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