There is nothing more fun to kids than a snow day!! The pure pleasure of having the day off from school to do with as you please is such a cause for celebration. It’s an unexpected vacation day that you did not have to plan for, save for, or feel guilty about taking off for – it’s just given to you! I can’t think of any other day that is utilized so joyously. There are no demands or expectations – it is just ENJOYED!!!
Alas, we grown-ups that are not working for the school systems, seldom, if ever, get a snow day. A few years back my husband and I drove into work (yes, we work at the same place but that’s another blog post) and were told to go home because of a power outage. Helloooooooo grown up snow day!!! Unfortunately for my husband, he was able to work from home as all the programs he needs are loaded on his lap top. He didn’t get to embrace the ‘snow day’ at all – instead he plugged in at home and worked away. I, on the other hand, did not have a lap top with all necessary accoutrements for working off site so….. I got to enjoy my ‘snow day’ (albeit with a slight twinge of guilt). Should that ‘snow day’ come around again, I now would have to work from home instead of enjoying the snow day as I too have a laptop with all I need to enjoy working off site. Sad day 🙁
Losing snow days is part of growing up – some things belong to the realm of childhood. However, some kids go to school virtually!! I know, seems strange but it works for a select group of students and I would guess that population is growing every year. Which means that this group of students never experience the joys of an unexpected windfall – the ‘snow day’!!! Even chillier – with the increase in laptop, chrome books and iPad use in classrooms, there is a very real possibility that ‘traditional’ schools will soon have some system in place for students to access lessons while home on a ‘snow day’. What a loss!
I know educators around the world would argue that not losing classroom time, virtual or otherwise, is a really good thing and that our nation is behind all other nations because we don’t prioritize education the way other nations do and if we want our children to achieve more we have to expect more from them. I have also read arguments that it will help future businesses. This following quote from an article I read made me shiver a bit … “That’s why it’s exciting to think that schools could begin grooming a generation of future workers, managers and leaders who understand the value of flexible working options and who are accustomed to using technology to work more efficiently”. (see full article) I’m just ‘old-school’ enough that I cringe at the ever increasing ways we are ‘grooming’ the younger generations to interact virtually and eliminating opportunities to interact in ‘real-time’.
Man, I’m glad I am not a school-aged child now days. I hope I never have to explain to my grandchildren what a ‘snow day’ was. Another reason for being glad to be over fifty!
I understand the value of an education and hard work and instilling the virtues of efficient time management. I want my children and grandchildren to be successful and to embrace hard work and put in the time necessary for all those things. I also want them to have joy in their lives and be able to embrace the ‘detours’ in life that come their way. Detour from studies via the snow day route provides opportunities to get out side and go sledding with friends, make snowmen, build a fort, or stay inside and read a book just for pleasure.
I say life without snow days is another version of Global Climate Change that should be troublesome to us and not a legacy we want to leave for the next generation.