Exam season


This morning I set my calendar and clean. Everywhere I take sports training sessions and team meetings until the end of the first week in July. It’s the typical downsizing and settling down that comes with exam time and school holidays.

My diesel bill is delighted, and although my children love all their activities and I myself believe in participation and involvement, every sausage has a point and some of these things must come to an end now for once so that we can breathe for the new season .

There is a time and a place for everything; a time to focus on sport and culture, and a time to concentrate exclusively on academia and learning; a time where we have to keep fewer balls in the air to put the primary focus on just one.

Of course, learning is not easy or fun for some. My girl child enjoys the quiet exam days in front of her desk with a mug of hot chocolate, she is driven to achieve and studious while it is a reasonable struggle to get Mr. to keep grade 7 equally motivated. Thank goodness for platforms like Wolkskool and small rewards at the end of every 20 minutes – a trick I heard from Lynette Beer. At least it gives the marks an extra boost and makes the learning experience a little more bearable.

I remember when I was in high school. I myself also liked the quieter exam days although I couldn’t stand those cold classes! For some reason, every teacher believed that the top row of windows should be open for ventilation. Cold air currents kept us awake while our brains, which must have been fresh, worked overtime to sift through all the information and insight in between the instinct to survive in the hateful cold.

With a single blanket and two layers of stockings to protect you from getting cold, we had to face the June exam. I guess it was more or less the same feeling as our parents who had to walk kilometers through mud, rain and snow (barefoot, like over the Drakensberg) when they were at school.

But we survived; the papers, the cold and the long hours of learning. And after that… a lovely lying-around holiday of three weeks with no (or very little) school work, a sports camp/week or a culture camp/week, visiting with friends or going on a road trip with the parents.

So all the seasons come and go. Every year the same, yet every year also different, with its own new learning experiences, events and things that affect the blueprint of our being. Summer always remains summer, yet there is not a single one that repeats a previous one, even if the air smells the same. Within our seasons so many things happen, we grow, we become wiser and ready for the next one that will soon make its appearance. And so the smaller mechanized seasons also prepare us for this and equip us.

We learn that change is a part of life. We learn that the hardest and easiest times of our life are limited to a certain time. We learn that everything is not always equally important and that it is natural to shift the focus. We learn that there is a time to put everything in and a time to rest, a time to study hard and a time to play hard. We learn that hard work yields results and that every project or activity has a beginning, middle and end.

We learn to look back but also forward.

Exam season, regardless of the stress and the less hectic, is good. It is another cycle in the wheel of our life that teaches our children to persevere.

Good luck to everyone writing the exam!