Other than a letter from the school nurse notifying you of a lice infestation in your child’s classroom, nothing rattles parents quite like the dreaded school project assignment.
“Guess what, Mom? We’re doing a super fun project in school. It’s gonna be great! The teacher said we might need a little bit of help from our parents at home, ok? Oh, and by the way, I kinda sorta forgot the assignment in my desk for the last three weeks, and just so you know, it’s due tomorrow and counts for more than 1/2 our grade. Here’s the list of everything we’ll need for the project. Thanks, Mom. You’re the best!”
The following is a list of supplies that will be needed for your child’s school project assignment. Please note, little to no money will be required to complete this project and most items on the list should easily be found around your home.
Thank you in advance for your help.
- markers & crayons
- construction paper
- poster board
- molding clay
- glue sticks
- calligraphy pen
- empty coffee can
- staple gun
- rubber gloves and protective eyewear
- striped paint
- truck load of 2×4’s in industrial grade lumber
- power tools you currently do not own or want
- one female mosquito carrying the West Nile virus
- blow torch
- fire extinguisher
- 20 cleaned carcasses of assorted road kill, sorted alphabetically by their scientifically recognized Latin or Greek name
Your child will hand you the list as you begin to feel the first symptoms of the dreaded stomach virus that’s currently rumored to be running rampant through the school district. You are fully aware that this project will not be “super fun” just as you know that it will not be “super fun” when, in less than 24 hours, you will end up close and personal with the porcelain throne when the stomach virus hits.
You take the list and glance over the items knowing that missing from the list will be…
- loss of sleep
You decide to immediately check off one of the missing items by quietly cursing schools, teachers and principals everywhere. You even curse the President and Santa Claus, not because of politics or commercialized holidays, or even because it’s anyone in particulars fault, but because it makes you feel better and that’s how you roll.
You then proceed to yell at your child for the next 30 minutes for being irresponsible and waiting until the last-minute. Of course, she cries and apologizes profusely, but not completely convinced by her sub-par performance, you ground her from all fun activities for the next year, knowing full well you’ll never follow through.
You take your child and the list to the nearest craft and hardware store where you load your cart with the necessary supplies. At the checkout counter, you pay your bill by sliding your credit card through the card scanner and take note of the smoke billowing off your credit card. You briefly wonder if you’ll be able to feed your family for the next week.
Throughout the evening, you will have flashbacks of your own last-minute school projects, especially the one that involved your mother assembling an intricate diorama of an old Hollywood movie set and you going to school dressed outlandishly as Lillian Gish…”Mom, who the heck is Lillian Gish, anyway?”
You will shoot daggers out of your eyes when your husband yawns and announces he’s heading to bed. You might even chuck the staple gun at his head as he leaves the room. You will then poke your child, a little too hard, with a 2×4 in an effort to keep her awake and prevent her from drooling all over the project.
You will end up typing the entire written portion of the project because you can no longer bear to watch your child’s painful hunt-and-peck typing, plus you’re afraid her hysterical crying will ruin the keyboard, not to mention that it’s way past midnight and you’ve begun to hallucinate.
In the morning, you will end up driving all of your children to school, not only because they missed the bus, but because there’s no way in hell you’ll risk damaging the project that kept you up most of the night. As you pull out of the carpool line, you will secretly give the school the middle finger, under the dashboard, of course, and then vomit all over the front of your bathrobe.
A few weeks later, when your child brings home the graded project marked with a B+, your self-esteem will be shaken. You’ll wonder where you went wrong and how’s it’s possible that a 40-year-old, college-educated woman is incapable of getting an A on a 6th grade school project. As you shake your head, your youngest child will hand you a paper and say…
“Hey, Mom! Guess what? We get to do a super fun project in school.”