Late last night, I got an email from North Campus Principal Todd Wedel informing me that we had a teacher feeling under the weather and asking if Megan could serve as a substitute.
Megan did this as a last resort at the Central Campus last year since that’s where our girls (13, 12, 10, 8) are, but this would be a Wednesday. A home day Wednesday. I mention the significance of the day of the week because the implication of her subbing today means Head of School Daddy has to step up.
As Rahm Emanuel once infamously said, “Never waste a crisis.” So, here’s an only-slightly-edited live-blog look at Daddy Home Day. Proceed with caution.
5:22 – Wake up without alarm. Feeling okay about changing things up today as it's good for the Head of School to periodically "drink the Kool-Aid" of the blended model, so to speak. I don’t get to do home days often, so this will be fun. Idea: live-blog home day!
6:28 – Leave house to take 12-year-old to cross country practice. Get an email from Megan before she leaves detailing lunch and house-tidying plans (forgot her parents are coming from Tulsa around 1 p.m. for a three-day visit). Towards the end, she writes: “I know you can do it, but I’ve been doing it for a year and have developed the ‘Only I can do this’ syndrome. It will be good for me to trust you with making sure everything is signed off and completed.” Geez. No pressure.
7:36 – Sitting in car waiting for cross-country practice to finish; extended quiet good for planning/praying. Text Admin Team to keep them in the loop: “I was planning to be in today, but North Campus needed a last minute substitute so Megan’s heading north. This means I’m running home day. You can still reach me, though, so feel free. In fact, my children may need you to."
9:12 - Inform girls that Shaun the Sheep is not part of Veritas curriculum. Key to success: utilization/specialization of space. Class begins.
10:42 - Read/work through math, scientific taxonomy of animals, and a bit of Latin with younger two; older two (plus friend over for the day to study) doing well on their own (history presentation on American colonies; vocabulary). Still feels like morning, but won't when 11 o'clock hour rolls around. Already fending off requests for lunch; must find caterer's number.
12:05 - Lunch served (tuna sandwiches all around). Trying to ask about progress without defaulting to the all too-easy "How much homework do you have left?" - sends the wrong message (i.e. "finished equals learning"). Asking girls to rather explain what they've done and what they've gleaned from their efforts (while peeking at their assignment lists). Good focus this morning; we'll see where we land by mid-afternoon.
1:13 - Working with eight-year-old on handwriting, we walk through page in book about good posture, proper grip, etc. Grab nearest book (Anne of Green Gables) and ask her to practice writing by copying back cover blurb. She writes the following:
"Once you abort Anne Shirley, the orphan girl of Green Gables, you will never forget her - and her many mishaps, dreams, and joys."
Good teachable lesson about being careful to include all necessary words (read) and write them legibly (about).
1:40 - Eighth grade Algebra threatens to derail eighth graders (daughter and friend). Alert raised to Defcon 3; immediate intervention required.
2:30 - Nuclear threat avoided; return to Defcon 5.
3:05 - Able to deal with a few of my own school-related things as homework wraps up. Proud of girls for gutting it out (one still working upstairs) and pleased with how they walked me through the day. Megan's hard work of training in previous school year is obvious, and I recognize I'm beneficiary of her efforts. Grateful.
3:14 - Ten-year-old boots up Michael Jackson's "P.Y.T." in iTunes to kick back after a long day. Did Megan teach her this as well?
3:27 - Must. Get. Off. Computer. Megan. Home. In. Thirty. Minutes.
4:05 - Pouring ice cold Coke Zero for our conquering hero as she returns from her quest to inspire Veritas students to pursue Knowledge, Wisdom, Goodness, and Beauty. Mommy's home (and there was much rejoicing).