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School Stuff
Fun Stuff
Life of Brian
Dear Diary

By Rachel Marie Jackson

Dear Diary
God I don’t know how to start well ok. I am a 12 year old girl called Elizabeth and I have a mum, a dad and six siblings! First there’s Jack who is 15 and the oldest then there is me then there is 10 year old Madeline (Maddy) then it goes to twin 8 year olds, a girl and a boy Max and Milly then there is Mandy a 6 ½ year old (never call her just 6) and then the baby of the family Joseph who is 4 ?. I have an absolutely crazy family. I mean there is 6 kids to get to school in the morning and 1 to get to kindergarten! First Jack leaves because he wants to meet up with his girlfriend Ashleigh. Then I help mum get Maddy, Max, Milly, and Harriet ready while trying to get my stuff ready as I go to a different school to my siblings. I go to the private school across town. I start school later but end later and get more holidays as my days are longer. Not to brag but I won a full scholarship with an essay I wrote about the holocaust and why it was so unfair and cruel. There was a scholarship for a boy and a girl to go to separate private schools. All the other girls wrote about how unfair it was that they were not allowed to wear make-up. The topic was something unfair and had to be at least 500 words, I wrote 700. So when I am dropped off to school it is pretty hectic. Here is a copy of my time table.

Time Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
9:30 Assembly Math Math Math Assembly
10:00 Math Math Math Math Math
10:30 Break Break Break Break Break
11:00 Art Literature Literature Literature Art
11:30 Literature Literature Art Literature Art
12:00 Literature Literature Art Literature Art
12:30 Lunch Lunch Lunch Lunch Lunch
1:00 Pet Keeping** Animal Science** Extra Chemistry** Computer Club** French**
1:30 PE PE PE PE Tutoring Art*
2:00 Tutoring Art* Tutoring Art* Tutoring Art* Tutoring Art* Tutoring Art*
2:30 Chemistry Chemistry Chemistry Chemistry Chemistry
3:00 Spelling Chemistry Chemistry Chemistry Spelling
3:30 Break Break Break Break Break
4:00 Spelling Spelling Spelling Spelling Spelling
4:30 Free Literature Free Literature Free Literature Free Literature Free Literature
* All senior students are required to tutor a subject to the juniors.
**These are Optional Lunch Time Activities

See what I mean! Then every Saturday I have this:
9:00 Netball Practise
9:30 Netball Game
10:30 Study*
11:30 Hockey Practise
12:00 Hockey Game
1:30 Lunch
2:00 Homework**
6:30 Dinner, Bath or Shower, Reading In bed
*Required to do at least ½ hour of study a week by school standards
** If Homework not in by due date detentions will be given, repeat offenders get polishing trophies and floors.
Hard I Know!! All this while trying to have fun with my siblings and juggling so much homework, sometimes it can turn into a walking nightmare. I get at least one piece of homework and reading from every subject everyday! Normally mid-week homework and reading is simple and fast but all the teachers set harder work for weekends and holidays. I just got given this diary by the school because I won a completion to write of an African child living in poverty and I did it a diary of a girl my age and how she did not go to school has she had to go and work in the fields as her mother was very sick and could not work for food. I cried a few times writing it! This diary has a cover of red checks just like the one Anne Frank wrote in! Well it is Sunday night and I am writing this after dinner and we are about to sit down to a game of Scrabble as it is a Sunday tradition. Last Sunday I won the game by ending with “prepare” going over triple word score, hopefully I do well this time round.

Dear Diary
Mum and Dad and the principal of my school dropped a bombshell today. Mum and Dad both took me to school today and we went straight to the principal’s office and I got really scared because the only other time I have been there was when I was very new and being welcomed into the school. So we went to the office and sat down. Then Ms Prince (Principal of Tiffin’s Private Comprehensive (My school) ) started to talk about my really high grades and the fact that the school had really nothing else to teach me and then mum and dad started nodding because they had talked with Ms Prince about it before. They then said they had found a place for me and said a name of a school that was when the bombshell dropped I was leaving Tiffin’s Private Comprehensive and moving to this place called Wilberforce College. I got really worried as I have never heard of this school and Mum and Dad have never mentioned it. Then Ms Prince started saying it was a great school and I would love it and what year would Mum and Dad (Mr and Mrs Brown) be putting me in. It turns out I will be skipping forward a year! I got over my shock of everything and asked Mum and Dad where Wilberforce College was and they started fidgeting and then I realised something and I will quote what I asked “It’s a boarding school isn’t it” and it was Ms Prince who confirmed it as Mum burst into tears. It turns out they have already got me a place and in the rest of today Mum, Dad, Ms Prince and I went to check out the new school and meet the principal. She was called Ms Slayton and was really nice but I felt nervous admitting my age as I was younger than everyone in my glass at Tiffin’s and then I was being skipped forward, I was almost 2 years younger than my year I was in now. Ms Slayton took me to see my dormitory and classroom and meet my class. It was scary meeting everybody and because I was in a mixed grade class so I saw everyone that would have been in my year if I had not skipped. All the girls were kind but were amazed that I was a year younger than all of them and seem ably just as smart. The dormitories were nice except they were separate so you were in with 5 other girls and I would not know any of them when I came here for good. Ms Slayton said that it was half-term in a week and that was a week long holiday but unlike the full-term holidays the girls did not go home. Ms Slayton said it would be the best time for me to settle in. I was shocked to find that out. I was also scared about saying goodbye to everyone.

Dear Diary
Today I had to say goodbye to my friends and that was very hard and because I am not going to school for the rest of the week as I need to pack and get ready so they threw a leaving party and promised to write and send lots of pictures as long as I sent them some back. Saying goodbye to Mrs Taylor was hard as she is the best teacher and was always so kind to me and tried to challenge me. I went home after school in tears as my friends had snuck off at lunch while I was at animal science and bought me a big box of chocolates and a teddy bear holding a big heart saying “Missing You”

Dear Diary
Today I started the long ordeal of packing my gear, Wilberforce College has a uniform but we get to wear casual most of the time according to Ms Slayton so I will be ok. I have already bought my school uniform you need 5 summer uniforms and 5 winter and then 4 PE uniforms. It is quite useful that the school timetable is almost the same as at Tiffin’s so I am used to the routine but it will be strange as I will not go home after school, I will go back to my dormitory. The school winter uniform is a black pleated skirt with a white blouse then a black blazer vest with the school insignia in white, you have a choice between a white beanie or a black beret. The summer uniform is a plain black skirt (They made them quite short because it gets hot where the school is) a short sleeved white blouse with the school insignia and a black beret. I am almost finished packing I just left out clothes for the rest of the week and some activities. For the rest of the week I will be finishing my day job at the local vet clinic ( I want to be a vet when I grow up) and getting my self ready to say goodbye to Easton, my home town, my birthplace and the sight where I found myself with 5 younger siblings and one older and it feels so strange to be leaving here. My best friend Alicia will be making the trip to Wilberforce College with me as well as all of the family in our big 10 seater car, although none of them will be staying.
Dear Diary
Today is the day. My trunk is in the car and everyone is having one last toilet stop. I feel like I am living in a dream. I mean I am leaving my family and will not see them till full-term which is 2 months away. Here I go.
New life, New school, New Town here I come
Armed and ready(I felt like writing something daring to cheer myself up, it didn’t work)

Dear Diary
It is 3:00 in the morning and we have finally arrived as we left quite late as we did a last drive around town for me to say goodbye to everyone and everything. When we arrived Mum and Dad decided they should stay and get some rest so they all camped in my dorm and we had to bring in several mattresses.

Dear Diary

Mum and Dad have just left and I am all alone at Wilberforce College, well not all alone as there are 200 or so other kids here. I am just about to be taken around by one of the girls in my dorm Zo? to meet my teachers and get to know the way around the school. I will get to see the Chemistry, Art, Math, Literature, and Spelling Classrooms as well as the hall and the gym. I will also see the field and eating area. Zo? is in the bed next to me and has short black hair that she managed to scrape into a bun as that is the way we have to wear our hair in class, but at lunch and free time (including free literature) we can wear it loose. Her hair lies in silky layers with a few blonde streaks. She is a petite colourful girl. She right now is wearing a lime green and hot pink stripy top and a black and turquoise spotty mini-skirt (turquoise being the spots). She had a very bubbly and active personality. She has told me that the person to avoid is Samantha, who is in the dorm next to us. Zo? says she is a spoilt show off and if I look flash and smart enough (Zo? says she’s not sure how much “enough” is) Samantha will try to collect me and that I shouldn’t let her as she will just boss me around, make fun of me and make me be mean to other people so that if or when I decide that it isn’t nice and I should leave being in her gang other girls will not let me friends with them as they would have heard stories about me or other people in the gang being mean and don’t want to be around someone like that. I know that was confusing but it was the easiest was to explain it. Here’s Zo?. Off I go.

Dear Diary
I am writing this after dinner.
My day with Zo? was exhausting. Dinner and Lunch were nice. Breakfast was the same as at home you just have toast or cereal and according to Zo? on weekends we get a fry up. Lunch was Sheppard’s pie, but we would normally make our own sandwiches in the dining hall at lunch time. Dinner was lasagne and Zo? said we have lasagne every Wednesday and on Thursday we have steak and stir-fry. On Friday we get Fish and Chips. On Saturday we get Spaghetti Bolognese. On Sunday we have a traditional Sunday roast. On Monday we have Macaroni cheese and on Tuesday we have sausages and mashed potatoes. Lunch on weekends and holidays is a mixture of old recipes like Sheppard’s pie, toad in the hole, cottage pie, and various others. It was a whole load different to life at home although according to Mrs Clayton, my teacher I could take all the same lunch time activities and I could choose to do an activity on Sunday and I choose Horse-Riding.

Dear Diary
Today I got a letter from Mum and Dad. Tomorrow I start my first day of lessons! All the other girls and boys are just starting to arrive so I am getting nervous as I have never met any of them.

Dear Diary
Zo? just took me to meet some of her friends. There I Smita a quiet Indian girl with about a million friendship bracelets, then there is Sophia who is so crazy she could do every act In the circus, there is also Maria who is an exchange student from New Zealand where ever that is, she is very shy and talks with a heavy accent. Smita has lovely chocolate brown skin and a smile is always plastered on her face. Sophia had the longest hair I have ever seen, it is down past her waist, its almost as if she has a cascade of golden leaves swirling down her back. She has special permission to wear her hair I two buns one on each side of her head. Maria is a tall tanned girl who has glowing green eyes. Maria won a scholarship here 2 years ago. I am surprised to have so many friends already. Smita, Sophia and Maria are all in a dormy with Zo? and I. The dormitories have 6 beds in them all with a pull around blind if you want some privacy. Every girl or boy has a Bedside table and a chest of drawers and a clothes rack to hang their clothes. At the end of the room there is a communal bathroom with 6 sinks, 3 toilets and 3 showers plus 6 shelves for people to put their toiletries in. There is still one bed unoccupied in our dormy. Smita says it belongs to Lila who everyone likes but is quarantined with Whooping Cough. Zo? told me about the pool here earlier. It sounds awesome. It is dug out of the rocks and at full tide is filled with water, at low tide it becomes the perfect BBQ spot.

Dear Diary
Today I start my lessons. We have just gone down to breakfast where I managed to have my fav brekkie. We have come upstairs to get our books and then head to our lessons. It is useful that we are all in the same classes even the lunch time classes because we all love the same things.

Brian Falkner Books