Saturday, November 1, 2014

The Day After Halloween

There are very few days during the school year that a teacher vehemently dreads, but the day after Halloween is such a day.  Which is why I am so glad the day after Halloween is ON A SATURDAY this year!  Having Halloween on a Friday (and a minimum day for my school no less) is the ideal schedule for a teacher.  Most years I do enjoy "celebrating" Halloween with my class.  The day after however sucks.  The kids are tired from the night-before's festivities while being amped up on candy at the same time.  They are useless so the day in the classroom is pretty much useless too.  My colleagues and I have often discussed how wise it would be to just make Halloween the last Friday of every October.  With all the festivities (both child and adult) wouldn't having them on a Friday with the weekend to recover make so much sense?!?!  I might have to try to get it on the ballot for the next election...teachers alone would give me enough signatures!
Yesterday was a good day.  The kids participated in some learning activities made fun with a Halloween theme.  We've been studying spiders this month so we wrapped up that unit as well.  There was a "party" during the last hour of the day.  We have such little parent help at my site so the party is low key since I plan it myself.  A little snack, a drink, a goodie bag, and movie is what made up this year's party.  That is pretty much my party M.O. 
I changed up this year's snack a bit due to our district's new wellness policy.  We are supposed to limit the sweets (candy, cupcakes, cookies) which at my site hadn't really been an issue due to the teachers running the show but had become quite a problem at some of the other sites where the parents are in charge of the parties.  Anyhow, trying to honor the policy I created treat bags for class with some healthier treats...
They were a complete hit!  The kids thought they were so funny, some almost fell on the floor laughing and gasping...especially about eating ghost poop!!  Just in case it isn't clear, the snack is dried cranberries, pretzel sticks, and air popped popcorn.
There were about 15 minutes left in the school day after the movie was over and we had cleaned up.  The kids had kept it mostly together up until then, but their excitement was coming to a head.  They were like a kettle that hums and shakes just before it starts to boil.  So we packed up, and I took them outside to play on the jungle gym for the last 10 minutes of the day.  Even then, I was exhausted just watching them.  The excitement was seeping out of them.  When the dismissal bell rang and their parents arrived, I waved and wished them a fun evening.  As my team and I walked back to our rooms we dripped with relief about not having to teach the day after Halloween.  
And I'm still relieved while still in bed on a Saturday morning writing this post.  This is a much better way to spend the day after Halloween! 
And to add to this happy, relief-filled weekend Day Light Savings time ends tomorrow!  It'll be so nice not to drive to work Monday morning in the dark.  


  1. We had the end of summertime last week and the whole day has gone to pot in a hand basket. Now we neither have a morning OR evening. I just wish they picked a time and stick to it.

    I've been thinking about sugar a good bit lately, and it's come from teh reaction that kids have to it. I know I cannot remember something if I have a lot of refined sugars or carbs. It blows short term memory. I noticed it while doing the Khan Academy thing where I would learn something and really know it as shown by passing the tests and if I had a lot of carbs it would be gone the next day as if I never learned it.
    In fact I've been wondering if the gorging on pints of ice cream after the trauma of a bad break-up has anything to it like the kids after all the sweets on the 1st of Nov.
    Do you not have a mid-term break about now, or is it all stored up til Christmas.
    Anywoos, have a good day. You're sounding more sparky, more energy. Though how that's coming over on a blog is defeating me.

    1. :)
      No, we get a few days off over Thanksgiving week and then our big 3-week break at Christmas. A lot of districts do the fall break in October and then only 2 for winter. As much as I could use a break in October, it's really the only month in our whole school year where we have a good 4 weeks without holidays or staff development or what have you that stops the momentum of instruction. So I like waiting, but that winter break is like gold to me when it finally gets here.
      Yah, the sugar intake is becoming an epidemic here. Doctors say it's tantamount to a cocaine addiction and food companies are putting it in everything to attract consumers.
      And if you, an adult, has that reaction after eating it, imagine a kid whose brain isn't completely developed yet. I've heard people say the "too much candy makes kids high" thing is just a load of crap, but I do see a correlation between what the kids bring/eat for snack or lunch and their performance in school. There are other variables there as well, but I don't think that sugar's contribution can be denied.
      On DLS time, I can see where shortening your days would definitely cause for darker days your way. I have such a hard time getting out of bed in the morning that this last month before the time change is brutal - the sun isn't even peeking over the horizon in October until about 7am (and I'm up by 5). Plus I'm looking forward to having the extra hour tonight. :)

  2. Sounds like a perfect Halloween! It was so chaotic here that I fell asleep on the couch at 8:15! I had morning duty and we are working to contract...I had the kids watch a spider movie while parents and I set up activities...then no recess because it began to rain....and rained through lunch so inside I was stuck...and ALL THROUGH MY LUNCH and their recess....then the parade....indoors due to the rain....then all but 8 students left with parents so for 40 minutes we cleaned up, rearranged desks and ate the last of the grapes and carrot I brought for the "party." We each had one Oreo....because I have one vegan and one allergic to nuts so that was safe :) I do love your snack....I may have to copy that for next year.

    1. I will email you a copy of the labels...I made them in publisher so it would be easy for you to make it your own.
      Rain! Yes! We were lucky to escape it during the school day yesterday, but it did rain last night and part of today...another reason I was so happy to not have kids in class today - rain, tired, candy-high, ugh!!!
      I'm sorry you're dealing with the contract issue. It's so frustrating. I look forward to hearing how it all pans out - doing the contract hours thing. As much as working only designated hours is so appealing, I'd never ever feel like I was ready. Some can get it all done in that time, but I can't seem to. I know it is the same for you.
      I've never had a nut allergy in my classroom before but do this year. I had all these fun healthy spider themed ideas for their snack, but they all had nuts or peanut butter so this one was created instead. But as it turned out, these bags were by far easier than making spiders. :)

  3. I always imagined kids would be all hyper the day after Halloween in class.

  4. The treat bags are amazing. What a great idea! I remember how over the top the parties and treats were at Laura's elementary school. Sheesh! What was the movie? Something Peanuts? The Great Pumpkin? Inquiring minds want to know. :-)

    1. Ahhhh, I wish it was the Great Pumpkin. I had it in my cue on netflix, but it never came. We did watch the Diary of a Spider since we've been studying spiders and then a Dr. Seuss Halloween/Grinch movie I found on youtube. They were both short and sweet.
      Yah, I have never been at a school that has parent involvement, but I've heard stories about the parties (and the teacher gifts ;) ).