Random Notions and Stories of Teaching

December 01, 2005

Good grief!

So, today was the longest half day of work ever. Ev-er. Actually, the only part that seemed never ending was the last 15 minutes. Isn't that just how it is?

First, I have avoided subbing for this particular teacher because her room last year was consistently in chaos. I think its her teaching style. It works for her, but when a sub comes in, it does NOT work. I began to get a little, shall we say, alarmed when the classroom teacher mentioned as she threw on her coat that she has had some pretty bad luck with substitutes this year (and she was glad it was me). Oy.

Come to find out, last week they had a sub for two days in a row. The first day another teacher had to come down because they were running up and down the halls, screaming, out of their seats, etc. The second day the principal came in to "lay the smack down" (as The Hubby says). It was not effective. Greeeeeeeeeeeat.

As I walked into the cafeteria Miss Germany* immediately asked me if Classroom Teacher had "warned" me who to watch. Okay, first, allow me to digress. I can't decide whether to be annoyed when other teacher (classroom or otherwise) "warn" me about certain students. On the one hand, I appreciate knowing who potential behavior problems are and to watch them closely. On the other hand, I think it makes me treat those students differently.

So today I had a kleptomaniac, a liar, and a plain old obnoxious kid. The day went really well considering what I had been warned about. The Liar (not my name, Miss Germany's) had a rough time until after recess - he argued with kids, took forever to do each activity, spend 30 minutes searching for a pink crayon, etc. After recess, he was better. Until Miss Germany came in to check on them.

While I was lining kids up, The Liar was packing up. As I was checking the Klepto's bookbag (Miss Berlin ordered me to, since she steals stuff), I hear a hubbub beginning around the mailbox area. Apparently, The Liar has a Little Debbie oatmeal creme cookie. Another child swears it is hers. Well...who do you believe? Miss Germany put the cookie on the classroom teachers desk and said CT would deal with it tomorrow.

Well, at this point, The Liar now becomes The Hysterical Wailer. The H.W. sits down, clutching his bookbag, and proceeds to scream/wail hysterically (hence his name). I have exactly 5 minutes to get the class to the gym for dismissal. So I left The H.W. in Miss Germany's hands and took the children to the gym. Once I was satisfied that everyone had walked to their line and sat down, I returned to the classroom. As I walked back, one helpful student informed me that The H.W. was "having a meltdown". Was he ever!

There was no reasoning/talking to this child. Finally, Miss Berlin carried him to the gym to line up. She had no idea what bus he was to ride. As I raced back to the room to check, it hit me...he is in the bus line I am supposed to escort out. The bus line that just left! Shoot! The H.W. will not move. So Miss Germany picks him up and he finally stands. I get him walking down the hall toward his bus. Soooooooooooo sloooooooooooooooooowly. I swear the kid is going to miss his bus. The closer we get to the bus, the slower The H.W. walks.

Halfway down the hallway, Miss Germany disappears into her classroom. Gee, thanks lady! You set him off, not me! Mind you, this is after she shouted at him that if he "wouldn't lie all the time so they could believe what he said, this wouldn't have been a problem". Grrrr.

He all but sits down on the sidewalk (and it was snowing). He will not get on the bus. He will not talk to me, the other teacher there, or the bus driver.

The bus driver is shouting that he is holding up everything. Thanks. Finally, I made a decision. I picked up The H.W. and put him on the second step of the bus figuring he will walk up the steps himself from there.


Eventually, I carried him up the steps and (gently) pushed him into the front seat. I didn't care if that was his assigned seat, all that mattered was that his butt was on the bus. Hopefully, he got off the bus at the other school and got home.

Never again. Never, ever again. Sheesh. Did I mention this was kindergarten!?

* Name has been changed


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