Curses #SOL19 27/31

Today was our big standardized test: the OSSLT, fondly known as the Literacy Test. In Ontario, this is the test all students must pass in order to graduate. They take it in grade 10 (and again if they fail). I more or less hate it, though when I look at my American colleagues, I know I should be grateful that this is the only standardized test we do.

While I was proctoring (well, during a bathroom break), I saw this post from a friend (hi, Katie!):

An itchy curse: May Poison Ivy grow on your grave.

poison ivy
This is the picture Katie took

There’s not a lot to do while you proctor a standardized tests. Some years I try to write haiku or other short poems about students, but I can usually only keep one or two in my head at a time. This year, I made up curses, and let me tell you, I had a hard time not giggling as I “wrote”. Here are the ones I remember:

May your colleagues be chatty.
May your partner be taciturn.
May you read only 5-paragraph essays.
Worse, may you write only 5-paragraph essays.
May your pizzas all be gluten-free.
May your ice cream be ice milk.
May your coffee be lukewarm.
May all your white t-shirts have yellow pits.
May your hairdresser retire.
May raccoons nest in your roof – over your bedroom.
May your children be precocious.
May your library books come due two chapters before you finish.
May your pencils be dull and may your ink pens leak.
May you write standardized tests every day for a year.
Worse, may you proctor standardized tests every day for a year.

Heeheehee. First thing I’ve found in a while that made me smile during testing.



37 thoughts on “Curses #SOL19 27/31

  1. Damn Amanda, that’s cold! Actually, this might have hit a little close to home because during my marriage ceremony an official at the court house actually said to my husband, “Hmmm, you’re very taciturn, aren’t you?” How did you know???!!! The 5 paragraph essay reading and standardised test proctoring curses were also very vengeful. Geez, who hurt you?

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Is it terrible that I am laughing? This was the *best* activity I have ever done during standardized testing. I seriously could not keep a straight face. Maybe I’m more vengeful than I think I am.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. From the other room, my husband asked, “Are you laughing?”
    Oh thank you, these curses are an absolute gift today!! May your partner be taciturn?! Brilliant! Ice cream, ice milk? Gorgeous! I may have to print these out they give me such joy.
    Curses are unexplored territory in my writing repertoire but I look forward to correcting that in the near future.


  3. I love this in the way that you would love a curse. I imagine a voodoo doll for testing. Ack! Here, take that! I really hate testing, but since I teach multiple grades, I don’t have to proctor. I believe that Paul Janeczko’s book Poetry from A to Z has a curse poem prompt in it. Yours would be a great mentor text.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Hahahahahaha! Thanks for the laughs!! As I read the list, I could feel the ebb and flow of your proctoring boredom. How about, “May the internet go down in the middle of the test.” Hmm, for the proctor that might be a blessing? Now this is really a horrible curse: May the birds build a nest in your stove vent.

    Liked by 1 person

      1. That one about the “birds in the stove vent”… well, it really happened to us one spring. Somehow the covering on the kitchen stove vent was compromised and tiny birds got in to build their nest. I kept hearing chirping like it was in my kitchen (I rarely use my vent fan) … then my first-grade grandson came into my kitchen one afternoon and said, “Gramm,. you have birds going in and out of your house.” Well, you can just imagine… Really, it is an awful curse…! LOL… my laugh is “wicked” when I think of the full meaning of this “curse.” This really is a slice I should write about… I have pictures of my husband cleaning out a bucket full of bird “stuff.”

        Liked by 1 person

  5. I’m proctoring for two weeks straight, starting next week. I will have to think of these. And try to write a few more.


  6. Leave it to you to find something positive about proctoring! Amazing! It’s pretty unbelievably boring, really. And I get stressed out watching the kids try to type their written responses when they can’t type–yeah, really valid measure of writing ability! Ok…sorry….I got sidetracked! I love your curses. How about… may all your tights be one size too small?


    1. Ours aren’t even allowed to type – they handwrite until their poor hands cramp & then spelling counts against them. And that tights curse is a good one. Adding it to my list…


  7. Long day. Your post to the rescue. We just administered the OLSAT Test to 3rd graders. I wish I’d known about your strategy for sanity ahead of that one! I’ll keep it in mind when we do the SBAC in a month. Yep, America. Sigh. My favorite ones were, “May your hairdresser retire”!!! Or move!!! God help me. And, “May your library books come due…” Hmmm…did you have anything to do with that amazing Michelle Obama book I was in the middle of needing to be returned…?


  8. Gluten free pizza is really unsatisfying, and yellowed pits is a terrible curse. May your computer be slow. May you hit all red lights. May it pour on the day your peonies come out.May the car always need gas when you go to drive it… This is addictive.


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