I have been a resident of Illinois all of my life, and I am as accustomed to Illinois winters as anyone can be – that is, I know to expect the unexpected, or perhaps just not to expect anything. For years, I can remember snow-less winters, but then the last few years have been bitterly cold.

But I have finally realized that, as a teacher, I get to enjoy what most school-age children love so much: school cancellations!

It’s probably good timing, and it’s a good experience in that I now have to adjust my lesson plans to accommodate this missing day. I was able to finish grading the punctuation tests, and while it isn’t pleasant that I had to give some lower-than-average grades, I was fairly satisfied that the grades were decent and that the assessment itself was fair.

But I do have to go back: we have a teacher institute tomorrow (so I may be blogging about that, which – from what I understand – will be about the traits of successful teachers), and then a long weekend with Martin Luther King, Jr.’s birthday on Monday. When we come back, we’ll jump into Thoreau’s “Civil Disobedience” – appropriate when thinking about King, given Thoreau’s contribution through this essay to King’s own philosophy – connecting it to Emerson’s “Self-Reliance,” which we read yesterday. The students had some very good insights into the essay, and I’m pleased that they’re engaging the texts and connecting it to their own lives or their own individual ethos (ethê? ethoi? I hate Greek plurals sometimes). I’ll do some serious planning for that, partially because I need a focusing activity for the students to do as they read through an excerpt of the essay in class (I didn’t get to assign it yesterday) and partially because my supervisor, Dr. Meyer, will be dropping by (hi, Dr. Meyer, if you’re reading this).

Until then, stay warm – I’ll be doing my best.