Spring tired

Sonja Karp, NLJ Sports Editor

There’s just nothing like “Spring Semester Tired.” 

That is the utter exhaustion you feel beginning in late February and lasting through the end of May. It affects teachers, administrators, students, athletes and parents and, though most of the things that go on during these three months are exciting and fun, they also end up sapping a great deal of energy from all of us.

March begins the busiest time of year for high school students, athletes and all involved in extracurricular activities. 

Culminating events for swimming, wrestling and basketball take kids and teachers out of school for both the regional and state events.

FBLA, FFA, FCCLA and Speech also have their regional and state events which take students and teachers out of school.

Science fairs and other competitions pull students and teachers from the classroom. 

Spring concerts and other musical events don’t take kids out of school, but do put an extra workload on all involved in putting on these productions.

State and national testing days interfere with the instructional activities of the school.

In a school as small as ours, what this means is that quite a few kids are pulled in several different directions, and though every effort is made to ensure that these different events don’t conflict with others so students don’t have to choose, that very thing can present a situation in which a student is absent for quite a bit of school.

I know kids who are involved in several different activities who have missed full weeks of classes in our A/B schedule and even more than a week.

In fact, I have at least one student who I have seen in class once in the last three and a half weeks. 

It’s exciting to have all of these culminating events taking place, especially when our students usually do pretty well in those events, but it’s also a lot!

There are days that start at 6 in the morning and end at 9 at night with little to no down time in between. Having your school work done before being gone, juggling deadlines of up to eight different classes, attending either sports or activities practices in the morning and/or the afternoon, then taking care of anything else you have to do in your life that is outside the school arena takes a lot out of a person.

I see kids walking around looking a little like sleepwalkers as they make their way through their day fulfilling all that is required of them.

These are all kids who do a good job handling the pressures of several different aspects of their life, but I certainly empathize with how tired and stressed they are invariably feeling.

As a teacher, the spring semester is exhausting as well. Our schedules are also full, we have to figure out how to get through our curriculum by the end of the year while we navigate through schedules that pull our kids from our classes.

Most school employees also are part of those sports or organizations which have all the activities taking place, so they too put in time outside of the regular class day and work week while also meeting the demands of their life outside of the school arena.

By the time the summer break comes around — which begins to approach at what appears to be lightning speed as it grows nearer —
the relaxation of all those demands is most definitely needed.

I am certainly not a morning person, and
this is the time of year in which every morning I face an internal struggle to haul myself out of bed.

I day dream of napping and can’t wait for a little time to refresh and reinvigorate that, thankfully, the summer provides. 

One positive thing about the spring semester is that it is so busy that it seems like you blink and it’s over. But while you’re in it, there is just nothing to compare with “Spring Semester Tired.”


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