The Post in Which My Son Misunderstands the Meaning of “Safety School”

March 12th, 2012 § 2 comments

Report cards came out last Friday. Both kids did beautifully, both are right where they should be, perhaps a little ahead in the reading areas. But the third grade teacher sent home a class letter reporting that he was no longer hounding the kids to turn in their reading journals–he was merely giving them one reminder–and as a result some kids aren’t turning in their reading journals. If that was the case with our student, it would be noted on the report card. Reading journals are done in school, and kids have different due dates for them. Doodles’s reading journal is due Mondays. Sure enough, on the report card, it said, “This term his reading journal wasn’t always turned in.”

Me: This is unacceptable. Why don’t you turn it in?

Doodles shrugs.

Me: You need to be responsible for your work. Your grade suffered because of your lack of effort on doing your reading journal.

Doodles: But I don’t like doing my reading journal.

Me: Doesn’t matter. You still need to get it done. There will be lots in life that you don’t like doing, but you still need to do. We need to brainstorm a way that you can remember to write it and turn it in. Maybe we tape an index card to your desk that reads, “Thursday: Do writing journal.”

Doodles: But it’s not due till Monday.

Me: That doesn’t mean you should do it at the last minute. You know, you tell me you want to go to M.I.T., but to get into M.I.T. and survive at M.I.T., you need to be organized and responsible for your work. No one is going to nag you and tell you to turn in your assignments when you’re at college.

Doodles: Well, you could call me every day–no, not everyday. You don’t have to call me on weekends. But you could call me five days a week and nag me to get my work done when I’m at college.

Me: That is so not going to happen on so many different levels. Kids who can’t turn in their reading journals don’t go to M.I.T.

Doodles: Fine. Then I’ll go to Princeton.

Tagged ,

§ 2 Responses to The Post in Which My Son Misunderstands the Meaning of “Safety School”"

  • Angela says:

    Hehehe :o) My son used to have to do nightly reading summaries (which I’m assuming is similiar to the journal you describe)and he HATED doing them! He didn’t mind doing the reading, but having to write about what he read? Not so much.

  • Sami says:

    Thank you for that. You have no idea how much I enjoy reading this and laughing. It is my break when I am doing something truly awful, like taxes.

What's this?

You are currently reading The Post in Which My Son Misunderstands the Meaning of “Safety School” at the pieces of my life.


  • Who I Am

    I read, I write, I occasionally look to make sure my kids aren't playing with matches.

    My novel, MODERN GIRLS will be coming out from NAL in the spring of 2016.

    I mostly update the writing blog these days, so find me over there.

    More about me and my writing.

  • Where to Find Me

    jenny at


    Follow Me on Pinterest


    Writing Blog: Jennifer S. Brown

    Photo Blog: jPhone Jenny

  • Archives

  • Meta