The Countdown


In a little under twelve hours, my grade 12 English class will sit down to write their government diploma exams. As much as I’m sure some of them won’t sleep well tonight, I have been having terrible dreams for a week already. I don’t think many students realize that sometimes the teachers are just as stressed as they are. I truly care about how my kids do tomorrow on their written exam, and next week on the reading comprehension section, and as much as I know they are capable and prepared, my stomach gets all knotted up when I think about it.

I have absolutely no idea what the topic is for the two written responses my kids will have to complete in the morning. The entire thing, understandably, is kept as top-secret as any military operation until after the exam begins. As an extra safe-guard, I am not allowed in the exam room and I will not find out what the topic and prompts are until after the dust has settled. My goal here is not to complain about the protocol: I’m very glad there are many rules in place to prevent academic dishonesty. The strictness of the whole thing is just a little bit daunting for everyone, even the teaching staff.

All I can do is say a little prayer for a workable topic and for prompt texts that my kiddos can be successful with. Believe me when I say I’ve been sending lots and lots of good thoughts into the universe over this.

Tomorrow’s exam is worth 25% of their total grade for the course, and the second part is worth another quarter. As the math whizzes in the crowd have already determined, the final exams are worth 50% of the diploma course. Yikes! Stakes are high. Tensions are high.

And I am out of chocolate.

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4 Comments Add yours

  1. pipersmom says:

    Huh…I’ve never thought of the exam from the teachers point of view before. Obviously, I assumed that they wished us well, but I didnt think they stressed as we did. Its definitely some food for thought….

    1. Believe it! We get tied in knots worrying about exams this time of year. When kids’ futures are on the line, we are very concerned about how well they do on the big exams.

  2. For the love of God, somebody get this woman some chocolate!

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