Wednesday, June 25

Some End Of The School Year Thoughts

by Ajike Akande

Well folks, we survived.  This Thursday is the last day of school.  As we kick the school year to the curb, I’ve got three things I need to share.  
  1. I would be remiss if I didn’t send a little love to the Late Slip Lady given our history outlined here and here.  

Dear Late Slip Lady,
I am sorry about our daily lateness for the past few weeks.  It’s just that I feel no pressure at all to get the children to school on time anymore.  I refuse to fall for the principal’s claim that important learning takes place in the first ten minutes of the school day.  Let me remind you, I am a teacher; this is a lie.  In June, this is an outrageous, are-your-pants-actually-on-fire, lie!  The report cards have been written, signed and placed in manila envelopes.  The teachers are lovingly caring for their students and getting them to help tidy and pack up the classroom.  
This chill feeling about the morning school bell is precisely why the other day when a (killer) squirrel came into my house at 8:30 am, I was not at all worried about the time and getting the kids to school.  I hope that my neighbours also feel chill about not getting places on time because when I ran out of my house screaming for Wife, I also ran to the neighbour’s and asked that they come with a broom to help shoo the (killer) squirrel out of the house.  They were happy to help.  They are very neighbourly.  They may have regretted being so helpful when they realized that in rushing to my rescue, they locked themselves out of their house!  Ooops!  Sometimes there are downsides to being neighbourly!
Anyway, Late Slip Lady, as you can see that right until the bitter end, I have good excuses for our lateness.  I’ll miss you and I know that your summer will feel empty without the Silverman-Akande kids.  Perhaps you can get a job at their summer camps.  We will totally be late for camp too!  
Late Mommy

  1. I have a lucky bunch of school-agers.  While our kids are super challenging at home, they have captured the hearts of their teachers at school.  I know how fortunate we are.  There will be years when this won’t be the case.  There are kids for whom the end of a school year is a much-needed break from being misunderstood and poorly taught.  We will have years like that, I’m sure but we are so grateful that this year we got lucky.  On the first day of school I posted this on Facebook:

To my kids' teachers:
Today I am sending you three of my babies - two more than last September. Please know that they are not perfect. Oh no they are not! But they are perfectly precious. And they are my babies. And I know what it means to be in your shoes, so I know that it won't take long before they feel like your babies. I promise that I am sending you the best kids I've got. I am not leaving the "good" ones at home. 
I hope you have a wonderful day meeting all of your new school "babies". May there be at least one moment today that leaves you excited for tomorrow! 
Here is my end of the year message to their teachers:
To my kid’s teachers:

My kiddos are going to walk out of your room on the last day of school and they’ll say good-bye the same way they have all year.  They won’t stand on ceremony because it’s the last day of school.  They probably won’t hug you or say thank you or anything like that.  They have grown to take you for granted.  I know it’s not okay to take people for granted, and I wish they wouldn’t take you for granted but you’ve become a big part of their life.  They’ve grown close to you and have grown to trust you to love them.  It’s true.   They really believe that you love them because that’s how you’ve treated them.  They think you’ll always be there for them so there’s no need to make a big deal of saying good-bye.  The last minutes of the last day of school are surprisingly anticlimactic.  

I hope you have enjoyed your students as much as my kids have enjoyed you.  I hope you are as smart and right as they say you are about everything, because since you came on the scene in September, I’ve been wrong about almost everything!  

Thank you for making me feel good about sending my kiddos off to school every day!  


  1. I have a favour to ask all of you, particularly those of you who are in our lives or who are part of our Facebook or Twitter family (It scares me that I have a Twitter “family” and I truly do not at all understand Twitter).  Please do not brag about your wonderful magic moments with your children over the summer.   Don’t gloat about your camping trips and your 2-hour portages when even the youngest member of your family managed to pitch in.  Don’t post pictures of your hikes or trips to fantastic water parks and other special places that children seem to love.  This kind of show-offy behaviour just makes me feel bad.  Just because I have to take a few anti-anxiety pills and book a babysitter to allow for recovery time just to take our kids to the beach, 20 minutes away, does not mean they are not going to have a magical summer!  It’s just that when I am trying to ignore them and catch up with my peeps on Facebook, they gather around the computer and ask about all of these happy children in fantastic photos and then they want to know why we don’t do super fun things as a family.  It’s hard for them to understand that Mommy and Mama love them but they are truly out of control and therefore we avoid going out in public.  Clearly we hadn’t thought through how hard it would be to have so many children, so close in age!  So really, for the children, if you must have some kind of magical summer, could you just keep it to yourself?  

Alright, I’m glad I got all of this off my chest.  Bring on summer holidays (and the total lack of magical over-the-top experiences)!  
XO Ajike
Hope to avoid THIS next year!!

1 comment:

Carla Ribeiro, M.Ed. (C.Psych) said...

can't promise not to post summer pics, but have to say this - you're awesome! hugs.