Random Notions and Stories of Teaching

January 12, 2006


I arrived a little early for tutoring yesterday. I put my coat away and put my purse down. As I was getting ready to find something to kill time, my mother looks up from her book and asks me to go see if New 4th Grade Teacher (N4GT) needs a break. Ooooook. Sure. She assured me she would explain it to me later.

Off I went down to N4GT's room. I knocked on the door of a quiet bustling classroom (just the kind I like). N4GT looked up and I said, "I am supposed to see if you would like a break."

She looked relieved immediately. "I would LOVE a break," she replied. She quickly explained what the kids were working on and I sat down to babysit...er...supervise. She was only gone for about 15 minutes (7 minutes in I let the kids go to recess). She returned with some ice and I was on my way.

Later, I found out the whole story. Apparently, she was attempting to take a student down to the office who DID NOT want to go. (He's been working on a meltdown for several days) He either zigged when he should have zagged or she did, but either way, N4GT fell. This woman is my mother's age (prolly a little younger), so falling is a bigger deal than it would be to me. Luckily, she is ok. Sore, but ok. The new 3rd grade teacher went right out to help her and my mom called the principal to come down immediately. Long story short, the kid is suspended (or at least thats what the kids are saying...and they usually know).

Which leads me to my point... I refuse. RE-FUSE. To drag a kid to the office. It's just not that important to me to potentially injure myself and/or lose my job. NOT worth it. I'll call the office and have the principal come get the kid. That's why they get paid the "big bucks".

My second point is I want to work in a hallway like this.

The lower hall (1st and 2nd grades) are catty. They don't help each other. They only look out for themselves. They're notoriously difficult to work with especially regarding art, p.e., and music. After Field Day, they want their P.E. class. They've had P.E. all day! I could go on and on.

The upper hall (3rd and 4th grades)? They look out for each other. Family emergency and you have to leave right now? Go, we'll figure out what to do with your kids. Not feeling well and have recess duty? I'll take your duty. The list could go on and on. THAT is what teaching should be about.

In other upper hall news, next week I begin two consecutive weeks (8 days) in the math teacher on my mom's team class (did that make any sense?). She is going to Texas/Mexico where her son and daughter-in-law live. They are expecting a baby. They came up to Texas to stay with the daughter-in-law's family so the baby could be born in the United States. Annnnnyyyyway. They had the baby yesterday! Yay! 6 pounds, 14 ounces. Math Teacher cannot wait to leave Saturday and see the new grandbaby. Can't say that I blame her.

P.S. Marcus Vick? Punk. Stupid. Punk. That pretty much sums it up. It's sad when kids who have a wonderful opportunity GIVEN to them and they ruin it.

I think Marcus was doomed from the get-go. First, he went to Tech, where being a Vick means you are "special". I'm sure there was all kinds of "special" treatment going on that the general public doesn't know about (no, I am not making legal claims...just "special" treatment). I know there was when Michael was there. What do you expect from a kid that has been told/shown all his life (or his recent life) that you don't have to play by the rules or that the rules are different/special for you.

The Hubby and I talked about a coach's responsibility in this situation.

For me, it boils down to this. The age that The Hubby (and Coach Beamer) work with have the ability to make their own decisions and accept the consequences. Therefore, I have VERY little sympathy when players make consistent wrong choices (not learning from past bad choices). If you learn from your mistakes...fine. It's part of growing up. However if you don't, don't blame me. YOU blew your shot. Not me.

My kids, on the other hand, have little control over some of their choices. Ultimately, a lot of their "life" choices are still made by their parents. Therefore, I tend to have more sympathy for them and continue to help them even when they get into trouble. They can't pick their homelife and some decisions are truly out of their hands.

Wow...that turned into more of a rant than I thought it would.


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