Not Ready for next year

August 10, 2014

A note to the teachers of my children for this upcoming school year:
I apologize. 
I, like most parents, had the best of intentions when it came to summer learning.  When the first week of vacation rolled around, we actually – and I’m not exaggerating – had the goal of learning to speak Spanish for the summer.  I printed off math worksheets, dug out the unused pages of the workbooks they brought home, and even thought we would learn to forecast weather based on cloud types.
We even started off gung ho in the reading program at the library so much that one child was reading 10 books a day, the other finishing novels like it was her job.  I was certain that by August they would be geniuses and upcoming teachers would applaud my mad parenting skills when we met at conferences.
But then, summer actually arrived.
And our mornings got a little later.
And the sun got a little brighter.
And the weather got a little warmer.
And when the sun is out and the air is warm and you live in Ohio, you simply must go outside and play because we get about four of these lovely days each year.  To stay inside and practice multiplication facts is practically blasphemy. 
For a while I continued to fool myself that we would find time to sneak in some grammar work and I would teach them the glory that comes from completing a science lab report, but that soon faded to a fun-filled world teeming with lightening bugs to catch.
But then I decided to give up.  I let them kind of have free reign over their days, to experience the pure joy that is summer vacation when you’re a kid.  They didn’t want to spend their time off being a student any more than I wanted to be their teacher, so together we threw in the notebooks and have lived out this end of summer break full speed, in kid style.
Stay in your PJ’s until noon?  Sure.  Ride your bike for hours?  Yep.  Build a fort?  Shower with a hose?  Catch a bucket of toads?  Procrastinate chores for field trips?  OK, that last one was more me than the kids, but still, these little creatures we call our own are growing up so very fast.  It will be a blink of an eye and they will call me from their offices, looking out at a beautiful summer day and say, “thanks for letting us play, mom.” 
I of course won’t answer because I’ll be out on a bike ride.

So, sorry teachers of this next school year.  We didn’t study as much as I had hoped.  I truly blame it on the Cumulus Humilis clouds, those puffy little white ones that are indicative of fair weather.


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