With today’s class, I now have subbed in all the of the 5th grade classrooms in this school.
Spring break starts next week but you wouldn’t know it by the weather. It’s mid-April and it’s STILL raining here in Calif. Today is no exception.
Expecting another rainy day session indoors, I was glad to see a break in the cloud layer just as I took the class to the cafeteria for lunch. The kids were finally going to get outdoors to let some of that pent up energy dissipate.
Toward the end of MY lunch, the school PA system makes an general announcement to “…ALL teachers please return to class. Recess cancelled due to rain!”
I opened the door to the teachers lounge and see that is, indeed, raining. Not just normal rain, rain. All I see is tons and tons of unending, waving sheets of HARD RAIN and HAIL.
My classroom is in the outer most building…on the end…facing away from the main buildings.
I will have to travel the longest route possible from the teachers lounge to my classroom. There is no covered walkway to reach my classroom. I have no umbrella or rain gear. I have the only key to the locked classroom in my pocket.
By the time I arrive, I’m soaked. Thirty kids huddled in front of the door are soaked, cold and getting soggier.
Trying to restore some sort of order is impossible. Several kids don’t want to “sit” because “everything’s” wet. I turn up the heat in the classroom and after a while there is a distinct odor of wet animal in the air.
While I’m squishing back and forth in my shoes wondering how I’m supposed to restore some sort of classroom order, one girl starts complaining to me about another girl making fun of the rash on her arms.
I take a look from a distance. Both her arms are dotted with pin prick sized red dots. I asked her about the rash and how long she’s had it. She said she has had it for a couple of days and it is a reaction to a medication she is taking.
Relieved, that she seems to have been diagnosed, I give the other girl a “knock it off” look and take a step to return to the front of the room.
That’s when “rash girl” says with a grin: ”…or it might be some kind of measles.”
Lord save me from wet, smelly, diseased 5th graders.