‘Til The Cows Come Home

I was wondering about this idiom today.  It means a long or indefinite time.  I think it might have something to do with when cows are milked at the end of the day.  Cows also move at their own slow pace.  I believe I read somewhere that the true origins of this idiom began somewhere in Scotland.  Why was I wondering about this cow saying?  Well, this morning our school had an assembly presented by the Dairy Council of California.  The Dairy Council brings a real life cow and calf to the school.

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During the assembly, students learn interesting facts about the cow.  This cow happened to be named Katie.  She was very calm, and it seemed like she felt comfortable in her trailer in front of excited kindergarten, first, and second grade students.  Here is a picture of Katie.

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Katie’s handler talked about her anatomy and what her life was like on the farm.  Since she is a dairy cow, she spends most of her time pregnant so she can produce milk.  She gets a few months off after giving birth to prepare for a new baby.  As Mr. Miller put it Katie is either going through lactation, or she is on a vacation.  Mr. Miller also explained how to milk a cow.  After all this time, I learned that the actors on T.V. are totally going about it wrong.  Mr. Miller showed us the correct way to do it.  He actually got milk to come out of her “milking spot” as one little second grader put it!  The students got a kick out of that.  I bet many of them have never seen a real cow up close before.  Part of the reason I enjoyed this assembly was the cow comedy.  Mr. Miller had a sense of humor that went over the students’ heads, but made sense to the teachers and parents in the audience.  Anyway, at the end of the presentation, the students got the opportunity to pet Katie’s calf, Taylor.  Here is a picture of the baby.  She was so cute!

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When it was time to go back to class, I was prepared with my reading lesson.  However, I wanted to give my students time to write about the assembly.  We wrote what we noticed and we finished up by writing our opinion of the whole presentation.  We are just starting to think about the text type of opinion.  We have spent most of our time writing personal narratives and memoirs.  Needless to say, my reading plan went by the wayside so we could write.  It was spontaneous, but meaningful.  And, the students were engaged.  In fact, we realized we wrote a story using two of the text types, narrative and opinion.  We thought that was really cool.  We had a fun morning.  We kept on writing until the cows came home!  I love days like this.  🙂

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