I smell pretty smoky, which usually makes me think of summer and night time fires and grilling, but today’s smokiness was caused by our annual burning of the Constitution tests which the students took in the fall. There is a law in Illinois that we have to destroy these tests that the students take to prevent someone getting their hands on them and sneaking them to next year’s students. I mean, really? How many different ways can you ask the question how many senators are in the Senate?
Instead of feeding the tests into an undramatic paper shredder and since we read Fahrenheit 451 right after, it seemed logical that we burn the Constitution tests. I have been doing this with my classes for the past ten years. This year, it took us until today to arrange the annual burn. And how appropriate. It was the day before break.
While the first paragraph of Fahrenheit was read aloud by SJ, the students ceremoniously wadded and tossed each page of their Constitution test into the fire. (No small feat because my test was 32 pages long.) It was a cleansing, a smudging, a real purging.
Now, all of us smoky, we purposefully step into the week and a half of spring break.