Thursday, August 30, 2012

Absenct Makes The Teacher's Heart Grow Harder

Teachers, did you ever notice how attendance drops on test days?

You can be cruising along at 100% attendance, wishing some students might stay home and leave you with fewer papers to grade every day. But no. There they are, all bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, turning in that work like it's the last day of the quarter. Filling the cafeteria with shouts and laughter. Clogging the halls with their hustle and bustle.

Then you schedule a test. Give them a week's notice. Write the date on the board. Mention it every day. Explain the makeup of the test. The points possible. Discuss items they need to know. And they're all there. Raptly soaking up your tips.

Test day dawns, and the list of absentees strings into infinity. The bubonic plague has arrived. Tuberculosis. Scoliosis. Ringworm. Consumption. The dropsy. Many an out-of-town wedding must be attended. Family reunions. After-summer vacations. Orthodontists have been scheduled. Dance contests. Driver's tests. Baseball games. A surprising number of youth are scaling Everest.

Don't worry. They'll be back. Club Day always restores that 100% attendance rate.

6 comments:

Sioux said...

Yes. In elementary, the kids feel bad in the morning, but miraculously recover at recess time, and then lapse back into bad health when we get back to work after lunch.

Kathy's Klothesline said...

Ahh, the joys of teaching.

knancy said...

Tink I will just make myself abscent on this one.

Hillbilly Mom said...

Sioux,
Amazing, isn't it? Relapses and recoveries. Miracles, almost.

*********
Kathy,
Their lives get in the way of my efficiency.

*********
knancy,
Or feel free to write yourself a note and sign your parent/guardian's name.

knancy said...

Well, if I did I would certainly spell absent correctly.

Hillbilly Mom said...

knancy,
Oh, a professional note-forger, well-versed in the common mistakes made by novices!

At least on the computer, we have the excuse that sometimes fingers have minds of their own.