Tuesdays are our playground day. We get the use of the playground equipment for 15 minutes each week–and our day is Tuesday. It’s also our late break day–for the same reason. And our break time is a half hour later than our usual time, but for the playground the third graders are all in!
Most days students are “starving” by the time our 9:15/1:05 break roles around. But by 9:45/1:30 on Tuesdays food isn’t what is on students’ minds. They often leave their snacks on the nearby field and rush to the climbing structure.
Today as I watched the kids play, I caught sight of the seagull out of the corner of my eye. Both seagulls and crows are wily creatures. They not only know that the kids have food, but they seem to know how to open zippers on lunchboxes, how to snatch and open bags that hold sandwiches and pretzels, and generally how to spread food all over the place as they sneak in for the steal!
I’m in a habit of taking and posting a photo every day–but lately on teaching days I have struggled to find something new and interesting to photograph. Today I had my phone out, snapping a pic here and there as the kids played. So when I noticed the seagull sneaking up near the abandoned lunch boxes, I turned to try to get the photo. Wearing a mask means it takes me a minute (or what seems like forever) to get my phone to unlock since obviously the face ID does not work.
I missed the picture the first time, the seagull took off when I finally got my phone to open and framed my shot. But a few minutes later, I heard a commotion (not coming from the kids) and turned with my phone open and caught seagulls and crows converging on the sandwich.
If you look closely, you’ll notice the telltale piece of food hanging off the seagull beak. But what you can’t see is the bird who got the sandwich and took off with it flapping in the breeze as it hung from its beak.
And lucky for my students, no one even batted an eye–they were full, totally satiated with their playground time. No food needed. Not on Tuesday.