Monday was the first day of school for us. When I tell people that, I invariably get the comments, "School in July?" or "I can't imagine sending my kids back to school this early!" or "That's just plain wrong!" Starting school in July is all my kids have ever known though. Instead of twelve weeks of summer, they have three week breaks in summer, spring, winter, and fall. While my traditional calendar friends are paying a small fortune to go skiing the week of Christmas, we are taking a bargain winter vacation in early December. In the spring, when traditional calendar teachers, parents, and kids are feeling completely drained and burned out on school and homework, we are just coming back from a three week break, feeling refreshed and ready to tackle the end of the year. You may think we are crazy for having school in July, but compare what you spend on Disney World or the beach in the high season to what I pay in the off-season, and you would be singing the praises of year-round school as well.
Addison headed off to first grade this year. She was a bundle of nerves leading up to that morning, but she had a great day and says her teacher is really nice. Both Elise and Nina had this teacher in third grade, so we know her well and like her a lot. Addison was especially anxious about finding her classroom, but Nina helped her out. Sometimes, it is nice to have a big sister.
Nina started fifth grade this year - top of the school! She likes her teacher too and has some good friends in her class.
Elise's first day of seventh grade was like a comedy of errors. She really didn't know whether to laugh or cry when she got home. The air conditioning was out in the seventh grade building. Clearly, the July school start date is a disadvantage when it comes to air conditioning problems. They weren't assigned lockers or gym lockers on the first day, so she had to carry around 10 tons of school supplies, gym clothes, sneakers, a lunch box, and a locker shelving unit all day long. That's especially fun with no air conditioning. The real kicker of her day though was finding out her lunch time. She has lunch smack in the middle of P.E. Yes, really. Twenty-five minutes of P.E., then twenty-five minutes of lunch, then twenty-five more minutes of P.E. Aside from the fact that it sounds like a perfect storm for post-lunch vomiting, cramps, and muscle strains, can you imagine having to go to lunch every single day in stinky, sweaty gym clothes? Think back to middle school and how often you washed your gym clothes. Now imagine going to lunch in those gym clothes when you were hoping to flirt with the cute guy from math class. It is just wrong on so many levels. That's her schedule though, and she is stuck with it for the year.
Now that Elise has a locker and the air conditioning has been fixed, I think that with the exception of her wonky lunch schedule, the 2014-15 school year has gotten off to a great start!