A Lesson In Good Sleeping

, , , , , | Learning | September 18, 2019

I’ve recently become a high school teacher and discovered that the last period of the day is by far the hardest. Worse, on Fridays we have double-length classes, and by halfway through, my students are bouncing off the walls. This particular day, after a pop quiz and seeing students through two assignments, I allow them to draw on the whiteboard instead of inflicting more work on them. They are cheerful and loud, asking me about previous jobs and competing to see who can draw the best version of a cartoon character.

Eventually, I realize I haven’t seen one of the students in a while. I ask the others where she is, and one of the others points her out to me. She has fallen asleep in the back of the class, curled up on the floor against the wall. Given the noise, I figure if she’s asleep she really needs it, and since she already finished her classwork I figure there’s no reason to wake her.

When class ends and the bell rings, as other students are leaving the room, I go over to where she’s lying. “[Student]? School is over! It’s time to go home!”

She opens her eyes blearily, looks up at me without comprehension, says, “Five more minutes?” and goes back to sleep.

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