Counting down to exams . . .

The local trees are finally putting out leaves and blossoms. Took them long enough! I went to pick up dinner tonight, and caught the scent of fresh nectar or whatever it is, and at first I thought a woman wearing heavy perfume had walked by, it was that strong. Lovely.

Also explains my prickling nose and itchy eyes.

I’ve got a countdown on my class whiteboard, and the final assignments are being typed up. 14 classes remain until exams. I suspect, though, that I’ll start to feel panicky on Monday when I realize it’s June 1 and there’s still so much to do . . .

Grade 9 — we’ll start their essay on Monday, comparing three texts: the class novel, Cue for Treason, the students’ individual novel selections, and our play study, The Tempest. The students also need to clean up / edit their blog posts for the course culminating activity, and anyone exempt from writing the final exam has to decide whether to challenge it anyway.

Grade 11 — we’ll do business letters on Monday and Tuesday, maybe Wednesday. Then, we have to do basic report-writing, on a topic relating to our class novel Yes Man as well as the independent novel studies and other texts we looked at together. Similar to the Grade 9 essay, but structured differently. Plus they also have to clean up their blog posts and receive their exam review.

Writer’s Craft — they’re currently developing book trailers while I compile (and continue editing) their novel excerpts into the class anthology. Then, starting Monday, we’ll do submission letters to publishers for practice, and then they’ll be finalizing their blogs, cleaning them up, and preparing for their exit interviews. Thank heavens that course doesn’t have a final exam!

I’m not ahead or on top of my marking, so I’ve got to address that this week, too. I guess, over gardening and other stuff, that needs to be priority. I should stay at the school late at night to focus on everything and get it done. So many problems with that, though . . .

We’re all tired at this point. Tired of the routine, and the regimented days, and the demands of the system. This is another one of those times when I kind of wish I could fast-forward or experience the next month as a montage with a kick-ass soundtrack. But like Adam Sandler in Click, I’d lose out on the depth of the experience. It’s not just the marking that’s coming — it’s my son’s next karate grading, the start of soccer season, play rehearsals for Shakespeare in the Park, and getting ready for Jack’s grade 8 graduation. I want to put my daughter in some summer activities, too, although we’re too late to register for a few of them. Why is it always such a struggle to find balance?

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