You can sum up this school year in a variety of ways. However, please don’t use the word “unprecedented.” The challenge isn’t what to say about the past 7 or 8 months – the challenge is how will we end it. Punctuation marks might be the best way to frame this finish.
Over and done. We came, we saw, we conquered. Signed, sealed, and delivered. A year like none other and thank goodness it is finally over. Full stop.
I can’t breathe with this mask on! Hybrid model of education, I didn’t sign up for this! Two more months, you got this! Summer time!
A pause, however continuation as next year is not going to be much different, and this situation/sentence will just continue to go on.
How will we start in the Fall? But what about graduation ceremonies? How might we go about really getting closure to the year? What are the effects for children being in front of computer screens for so many hours? I never did understand, how is it sanitary for students to pass a football but not share a pencil? Do the footballs have an anti-bacterial coating?
A case can be made for the fittingness of each form of punctuation. Yet, a lesser known, unusual mark might top them all. The ellipsis. And maybe that is because ellipses do the opposite of what punctuation usually attempts; indicating relationship between ideas.
The “dot, dot, dot,” usually is used either for omitting text, for pausing or trailing off in speech or thought.
Perfect. Even more so, considering the advent of the ellipsis can be traced back to the drama of the 16th century. “Drama was ‘especially important’ in the evolution of the ellipsis,” says Dr. Anne Toner a Cambridge academic.
Our parents and grandparents may have profited or toiled from the Roaring 20s and Great Depression. Unarguably very dramatic times. But, in our own lives, what has caused more stir than COVID-19? No better punctuation mark seemingly lends itself to the drama of the past year (or year and a half!) more than an ellipsis.
How we end the 2020-21 academic year is of our choosing.
The “rain” has fallen. I only hope we subscribe to American singer-songwriter Johnny Nash’s optimism, “Look straight ahead, nothing but blue skies.”
Because bright, bright sun shiny days are surely ahead.
To be continued…