My Social Life Would Die

Today writing an essay was not on the minds of my middle school students. It is exam week. We wrap things up on Friday at 10:30. The sun was shining, they didn't get their usual break in the morning, and many of them are just plain worn out!

Getting in the last juicy gossip, finding out the final decision on "who is going out with whom", and deciding which classmate is playing with them at Hoopfest are so much more important than sitting at a desk writing out an exam. We heard cinnamon gum made you think better, so I even helped them along by handing out Big Red this morning! As they pushed their pens, chomped on their gum, and furrowed their brows I paced around looking over their shoulders just to try to keep them encouraged.

Later I was reading a new poetry book and came across this title. If I had given them a chance to speak their minds today, these may have been their words.

My Writing It An Awful Mess

My writing is an awful mess,
And my teacher asked me why,
" I zoom through my assignments,"
I told her with a sigh.
" I want to finish all this work
So I can yack with friends,
I simply cannot wait until
The school day finally ends.
" I never check my spelling and
Punctuation, I don't try,
For if I spent my time on these,
My... social life would die.
"It's talking with my friends each day
That keeps my whole world bright,
And I don't want to give this up,
Just to get my schoolwork right."
-Kalli Dakos


  1. I am amazed that school is still going in Washington. It has been out here for some time. (I think). Maybe just last week. . .

    I liked the poem. Even though it didn't reflect my early adolescence, because I was a stickler for detail, it reminds me that it was the social life at school that I loved best.

    I was also amazed that you handed out gum to the students. . .it was definitely a "No-No" when we were that age. I used to chew an entire pack of BubsDaddy without being caught. One day I blew a gigantic bubble in my history class and it popped all over my glasses. My teacher said in his wry, dry monotone: "That's what you get for chewing gum in my class." (I wish I could remember his name. He taught at the High School when we were there also.)

  2. pimd: Some WA schools are out. We never start until after Labor Day because of the Ferry County Fair which is Labor Day week-end. We also do a winter break in late Feb. That is what puts us so late! My students wondered the same thing. I actually like the later start in Sept. and really am ready for that winter break!! Gum was a big issue at my last school. Lots of kids... too much mess. At my small school it seems to work okay.

  3. ah, that poem is for you too. soon the marking will be done and assignments handed in and desks cleaned out....

  4. Sounds like Kalli Dakos got it right, to me! :-)

  5. Peppermint candy helps, too, if gum is a problem.

    Loved the poem!

  6. You should put that poem on a poster and put it on the classroom wall!

  7. Thanks for all your comments. May- I will have to try the peppermint candy also. The essays have been read, scored, and grades are done. Yahoooo!

  8. HAHAHAHA Thats how i always used to be at school but the only difference is that i always did my school work so we basically dont have a connection

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