Pam Webb

a writer's journey as a reader

Archive for the tag “Parent Teacher Conferences”

Timely Trials

November is a conundrum, being a month that offers a mixture of pleasantries and of trauma.

First off, how can one hour wreak absolute havoc? The bonus of getting extra sleep when setting the clock back one hour quickly becomes a bad trade off since my body clock doesn’t easily adjust.

I’m one of those people who doesn’t need to set an alarm clock. No matter when I go to bed I wake up at 5 am. Sleeping in is an ideal, not a reality. DST now creates the dilemma of the time read on my bedside table blaring “4 am” in red LED numerals. Gah.

It takes until spring, about the time we spring forward, that my body clock reconciles the hour difference.

Another November trial is PTC—Parent Teacher Conferences. Our district provides two nights (after working a full day) where teachers are available to parents. As much as I enjoy meeting parents, it’s a tough schedule, especially since that hour sleep deprivation is amplified by a week. I hope parents don’t think their student’s teacher is a zombie because after a week of disturbed sleep cycle I am definitely feeling zombi-ish.

Fortunately, the long two days trades out nicely as it applies to two days off which coincides with Thanksgiving week. Having a week off after PTC while dealing with DST having graded a stack of SPRPs (Senior Project Research Papers) is definitely appreciated.

And I do enjoy thanksgiving. No holiday shopping hype. No endless rounds of obligatory events to attend. No gifts to stress about. Nope. Food, friends, family. Now, that’s what I call a grand holiday.

One another aspect of November that is irksome is the night factor. Having the sunset earlier and earlier each night means driving home in the dark which initiates the feeling I’m working the swing swift in the coal mines. After working inside all day stepping outside into the light is a necessity. Good thing D3 is inexpensive and I thank whomever for inventing the Happy Light.

perpetuating a perceived reality

November also begins the season which features that four letter word, and its presence stays among us much too long in the area of which I call home. Shiver, shudder, and grumble.

So—November is a bit of a trial, yet knowing there is a pumpkin pie waiting for me at the end of the month makes losing sleep, grading papers, working two twelve hour days, and dealing with that which shall not be named, a bit easier to swallow.

DST and a Tough Week Ahead for Me

First page of Benjamin Franklin's anonymous le...

First page of Benjamin Franklin’s anonymous letter to the editors of the Journal de Paris, April 26, 1784. The letter is a satire proposing various methods to awaken Parisians early in the morning in order to save money on candles, and presages the idea of daylight saving time. The letter is untitled and appears in the “Économie” section of the journal. The original letter was in English but this, its first publication, is a French translation. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

No matter when I go to bed I automatically wake up around 5 am.  Good thing I’m a morning person.  This usually is not a problem for me because I actually enjoy getting up early and having the best part of the day to myself. I find myself embracing the cadence of morning. However, I do not embrace 4 am, which DST has reinstated since Sunday.  I can push the clock back an hour, not so easily my body clock.  Daylight Saving Time and I do not see eye to eye.

Which brings me to notion of how art imitates life.  Currently I am involved in NaNoWriMo and have even gone as far as inflicting sharing my daily NaNo entries with readers as a separate blog.  Consider this an invitation:  The main character has many of my tendencies, dark chocolate breaks, being one of them.  “Vera” also dislikes DST as much as I do.  In fact, she turned her rant against Ben Franklin, the inventory of Daylight Saving Time, into a scathing persuasive essay called “Death to DST” (or words to that effect) as an English assignment.  I’m hoping she’ll get a good grade on it.

This week is a good week for that extra hour of sleep, although getting up earlier seems to nullify the bonus time. Yes, this week is the official beginnings of second quarter and with it comes Parent-Teacher conferences.  My school runs them two nights and gives teachers Friday off.  We are very much ready by then for a long weekend. We teach all day on Wednesday and then PT until 7 pm–basically a twelve hour day.  Thursday we meet as departments and then meet with parents from 3:30 until 7 pm once again.  It’s part of the job, yet it is grueling.  I actually like meeting with the parents and discussing their student, except there is usually a buffalo herd of moms and dads hanging out in the hall waiting their turn.  I try not to drink too much water because breaks are far and few between.

DST, NaNo, and PTs–it’s one of those weeks of sucking it up yet needing to find time to breathe.

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