Dante missed one when he was describing the circles of hell. It’s obvious that he never had to spend the afternoon in a classroom with a group of under-fives who have been charging around all lunch-time in the summer who WON’T TAKE THEIR JUMPERS OFF! You can see the steam rising off some of them as they hurtle in from the playground. Actually I’m exaggerating slightly – most of them will hang up their jumpers if you ask them firmly; there are about six boys who resolutely refuse to be parted from their blue sweatshirt with the school logo on the left hand side. Last week we had a heat-wave – something that we are ill-equipped to deal with in England so you can imagine what it was like at midday on a tarmac playground. The children staggered, drooped and crawled back into the classroom followed by a little group in dripping, soggy blue jumpers. I told the boys that this was quite ridiculous and they had to take them off. ‘But my mum says she’ll kill me if I take it off Miss.’ ‘My dad said if I take Ciaran’s jumper home by mistake again he’s going to be really cross Miss.’ ‘You said we have to have our name on the label and mine rubbed off in the wash Miss’ ‘I’m too cold Miss.’ that’ll be why there’s sweat running down your face I take it? In the end I made a deal with them, ‘If I personally put your jumpers in the cupboard for safe-keeping and return them to each of you at home-time so you can put them back on before you go, will that be okay?’ Five of them eagerly pulled their jumpers over their head and ran out to put them in the cloakroom. I then looked down to see that Alamgir who is normally so well behaved steadfastly sitting on the carpet with his arms folded and a very determined expression on his little face. ‘My mother said I will catch a chill on my kidneys if I take it off Madam.’ ‘Take you jumper off right now or you will melt. I really don’t want to have to scoop you up with a spoon and return what’s left of you to your mum in a paper cup.’ With much head shaking and threats that his mother would be ‘most displeased’ we finally managed to release him from his sweaty strait-jacket. Not that he was likely to catch cold – I noticed he had two t-shirts and a woolly vest on under his school shirt.