There’s a Shakespeare sonnet which starts ‘That time of year thou mayst in me behold,’ but he is talking about winter. I’m thinking of this time in the summer when for children, school is drawing to a close for the blissful holidays. There’s a great sense of relief that wretched school is soon to be done, but there’s a slight sense of excitement or maybe dread that next year everyone will be a year further up the school, and for some they will move on to a different school altogether. The young people at the top of the secondary schools have already left – maybe to go on to college, or training, or a job.
In junior schools there is a definite sense of relief as you move into the next class, no longer are you the youngest, there are people below you. For those who are going to become the oldest in the school there is a real sense of being different – you are the tops! However… as that year wears on you realise that you will move to secondary school, with all those giant older children, and then you will be the babies… and those at the top of the school will seem like grown-ups, will seem almost the same as the teachers!
Where I sit here, with the window wide open, I can see the roof of the primary school and I can hear the children. I hear them in the mornings milling around ready for school, and at breaks when they rush around screaming and roaring in their games – and at lunch time too, then there is the quieter babble at the end of the school day as they head for home. Sometimes I can hear them in their classes – singing or doing games.
Soon the school will be empty except for the cleaners, and the village will be quieter! The beginning of the holiday will be a joy, the middle sometimes a yawning boring void, and then the end – back to school in a new class, with excitement… or maybe not!