Lesson 94 on Improvisation and inspiration
It was the Tuesday after Ofsted, and already people had run out of steam. Nobody could work up any enthusiasm for work and there were still almost five weeks till the Summer holidays.
Mrs Head saved the day. She came flying into the staffroom at morning break.
“Sports day!” she announced dramatically. “Thursday!”
There hadn’t been any chance to even consider a sports day while the school was focused on Ofsted, but now it seemed like a good excuse for some fun.
“It’s not long to get organised,” mused Miss Senior thoughtfully.
“The weather forecast’s good!” said Mrs Head. That settled it.
Everybody was energised. The school could concentrate its efforts on something nice for a change.
“Invitations!” Mrs BottomJuniors had a stroke of inspiration. “I’ll get my lot to make invitations to take home!”
“Why just your lot?” chipped in Miss Maverick. “I think everyone deserves a Sports Day invitation!”
“And we need posters for the doors and the gate,” said Miss ClassTeacher
“And a timetable for the events!”
“And somebody to go to Macro for the refreshments and prizes!”
“And heats on Wednesday afternoon!”
“And practice runs this afternoon!”
This whirl of activities took care of the rest of Tuesday and most of Wednesday. Thursday morning was occupied in getting the field, the equipment and the seating for the spectators ready. Chairs and benches had to be carried out to the field. Skipping ropes and balls had to be assembled and counted. An air of purpose and anticipation permeated the whole school.
The previous year’s Sports Day had been rained off and the year before there had been an unfortunate incident when some older siblings smuggled in cans of lager. This year everything was looking good. The weather was fine, only younger siblings had been invited and jugs of soft drinks were to be provided.
At one o’clock the invited family members began to turn up, the pupils were assembled and settled in their places. Mrs Head made the official speech of welcome and the sports began.
I can’t remember all the individual events, but an awful lot of people seemed to win prizes. There was a great deal of cheering and excited jumping up and down. Best of all, everybody could just be themselves and enjoy the day.
In the last race there was a collision between two of the leaders and one tripped, collapsing in a heap. His Mam, who had been cheering him on, saved the day by running onto the track in her stilettos, scooping him up and carrying him laughing to the finishing line as everybody whooped and whistled encouragement.
She got a prize as well.
It might not have ticked any Ofsted boxes, but, as far as all the participants were concerned, Sports Day was an unqualified excellent!