As we were finishing up Reading yesterday, the nurse casually opened my classroom door and said, "We're in lock down mode." Thankfully, we'd run this drill twice already this year, so I had some idea of what to do, but it's always a different story when they don't warn you it's coming or review the procedure! But anyway, not knowing what was happening, I quickly herded my kids to the corner, locked the door, turned off the lights and we sat waiting. They were a little giggly/chatty, but overall, I was very impressed with how they handled things. They make me so proud. :)
After we'd been sitting like this for about 5 (felt like 30) minutes, the principal came over the speaker and announced that this was, in fact, an official lock down. She said everyone in Palmer was safe, but there was a situation right outside that was "being handled." She said we needed to get any of our kids who were in Resource or the cafeteria and bring them back to the classroom. She also insisted that we close our shades.
The kids freaked out a little at the realization this wasn't a drill. I had a few hold each others hands, which was adorable. After confirming I had all my kids (or at least knew they were in whichever room they were supposed to be in), I sat and waited. The kids had some questions about what was going on and I was as honest as I could be, but honestly had no idea what was going on. One student complained about his leg hurting from being cramped up in the corner... I assured him it was the better alternative to getting shot.... :) I kept reassuring them that we were in the safest place possible (behind locked doors, in a corner, out of reach), and they seemed to be somewhat comforted by that fact. We continued to sit in silence in the dark for about 20 more minutes. It was quite an experience. It really got me thinking about my role in these students' lives and what I do to protect them, etc. (20 minutes of silence is too long! haha)
When they finally lifted the lockdown, my students went to lunch and I was able to talk to a few people to see what was going on. No one really knew the REAL story, but everyone seemed to have their own rendition of a similar happening. Apparently, it involved a stolen car, a car chase, the car turning into Palmer (a dead end), crashing into a teacher's car, and the drivers running away or getting arrested.
There was no recess because of the unknown whereabouts of one or more of the perpetrators, and between that and the craziness of the morning, they were quite hyped by dismissal! Just another day in the life, I guess! :)