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Sunday, March 9, 2014



My Elementary Schooldays

this lens' photo
When my family moved to our current community (before my sister and the younger of my two brothers were born), my brother and I started going to the local Yeshiva (Jewish religious school) day school. When we got to the community, it was January and I started in first grade and my brother started in kindergarten. Every day we had two small and one large recess (there were two lunch periods -- one for kids 1st-4th grades and one for kids 5th-8th grades and we each had recess when the other group had lunch). When I was younger, I played jump rope. (When my brother was in Kindergarten, he only had a half-day of school)

Punchball in a nutshell

Punchball is a game similar to baseball, only there are no bats, no pitchers and the ball is pink and rubber. In my school, we had a fenced in field with a wire fence on two sides, a wood fence bordering the neighbor's backyard, and the school building with a black painted metal staircase leading to the side door into the building's main floor. Our bases were as follows: the fence along the street was home, one support leg of the staircase was first base, the jungle gym in the center near the neighbor's fence was second base, a spot along the side stone fence under the wire fence equidistant from home with first base was third base. To the right of the jungle gym was a slide that stood at the entrance to "the alley", an extension of the playground that was where we would aim, since balls going down "the alley" would go downhill and be hard to get home before the hitter scored.

Ground rules were: fly balls caught from the air or if they bounced of the school building or the third base fence (both of which were foul balls) were out. Three fouls were out (since strikes were basically non-existent since the hitter held the ball in his/her weaker hand and punch it with our stronger hand's fist. A ball hit over any fence was out (even the neighbor's fence, which was fair, since we had to climb the fence into the neighbor's backyard to retrieve the balls).

When I was in 5th grade, I was a fair to middling player, not bad, but not great. The summer I was officially going into 6th grade (I say it that way since I never did go to 6th grade, early in the school year -- I was sick the first week of school -- the school told my mother they'd like to skip me to 7th grade, but I digress) we spent the summer at the beach and I attended a day camp/summer school program. One of the things we did in this program was play punchball. During this summer, I was playing punchball with other girls, most of whom had never played punchball before, so I was one of the better players. Because of the confidence I had from this and because my skills gave team captains confidence enough in me to allow me to play most of the time, I developed into a really good player (when I would come up, the other team would play far back, and assumed I would hit a home run -- no fence, legging it out after hitting it far -- and most of the time I did).

When I was in 8th grade (and my brother was in 6th grade), I was in one of the first trades in my school's history when I was traded for one of my brother's classmates to my brother's class. He and I made a great double play combo (I played first base and he played on the jungle gym).

I miss punchball, but I have some great memories of recesses playing punchball with the boys (Oh, did I forget to mention that I was the only girl who played regularly and was taken at all seriously as a player).

Compugraph Designs' Spoonflower Shop

Spoonflower is a site for buying custom designed fabrics. The design pictured here is a volleyball design.

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