Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Mixed bag

62.  That's the magic number.  For one of my assignments today, the students are going to teach something to anyone they choose.  They are to be the "Miracle Worker" in keeping with Annie Sullivan of Helen Keller fame.  For an added spark, if the person they teach will write a couple paragraphs about the experience, I will offer them an additional 20 bonus points.

One boy told me, "I was going to teach my dad to upload a picture on Facebook but you probably can't read his  writing.   I just smiled and said quietly, "Well, Aaron, I read your dad's handwriting in 1980, I think I can read it now!"  I went on at their insistence to identify most of their parents as former studnts.  One boy whose dad has passed away was touched to learn I could still quote a poem his dad wrote in my first freshman English class.  He looked down at his desk and looked like he might cry, but he softly said, "My dad wrote a poem?" Yeah, it was a moment.  I later counted and discovered I have taught 62 of their parents total...  a little over half of my kids!!!

Later in a different class communication broke down and one student's temper flared.  Words that should never be spoken from a student came out in class and eventually the principal sent him home.   That was a different kind of moment...  an uncomfortsble one that leaves me still wishing I had thought of some other way to handle the situation...  Teachers always have these kinds of days.  We rise up the mountain and slip down the ravines.   Sometimes our little chickies get along and sometimes we do NOT!

Tonight the snow falls outside and we wonder about the status of tomorrow...  Will we meet another snow day?  Or will we be forced to slide on into school!  *Update:   No school!  Thus goeth our Easter vacation.


Becky K. said...

Whatever tomorrow holds you are up to it....How amazing that you touched your students so sweetly by honoring their parents and in the one case his memory.

We will get the snow beginning tomorrow night. Ugghh. I think we've had enough now. Lots of little snow storms, nothing big enough to force everyone to stay at home.

Ricki Jill Treleaven said...

I think it is so special that you can share memories of your students' parents with them. I am sick of this cold weather, too. Stay warm, and focus on the mountaintop moments rather than the valleys! (I remember both...I am a former HS English teacher...)

Ricki Jill

Lisa said...

That chicken has a kitten coming out it's butt...

only if I had a baby you could teach too...they would love you as much as I do!!

Laurie said...

Snow day here, too!!

What a very sweet and touching story about your student and his dad's poem. Love it! Thanks for sharing.