Years ago there was a television game show called ‘Beat the Clock’ where contestants were tasked to either do some task, or answer a question I don’t remember. But I do remember always watching. Obviously the show wasn’t very impactful or I would probably remember more details. I do remember that whatever the task, contestants were playing against the clock. Time would tick away and they needed to finish whatever it was they were doing before time ran out.
I am currently reading a book to my students titled ‘The Lost Track of Time’ about a young girl named Penelope who is driven by her mom’s daily schedule. Mom is highly efficient because she keeps her schedule tight so that she can maximize every minute of the day. Dad is a hung-ho supporter of mom’s efficient ability and tries to encourage Penelope to be a team player and all Penelope wants to do is to have some ‘free time’ so that she can write. She wants to be a writer.
One day after Penelope finds a ‘hole in her schedule’ this fantasy story takes Penelope to a different world where she and Dill, a very tall skinny character, are in search of ‘The Great Moodler’, who permits free time called moodling. It’s all quite entertaining and my students and I and we are enjoying the daily read.
When performing a task, watching a movie, or visiting friends, or anything for that matter, we often ask ourselves How much time is left? My now deceased good friend Drew who was always sarcastically humorous, would always respond ‘Why, do you have a date’? For him, there was never a sense of rush or hurriedness.
I have often likened the game show Beat the Clock to my day at school because I feel that the moment I step foot on the school grounds asphalt I am on a schedule, a schedule that is dictated by a bell. Hurry, hurry, hurry. Linear time is what it is, but we do have some control of how we spend our day. There is a lesson here. Perhaps I need to learn how to moodle and not be so consumed by the clock, and schedules. Drew had this down pat, there is always time if I make it.