Green It, Demean It

| Learning | April 17, 2013

(It’s parent-teacher night at my school. My mother has come and makes a beeline for my English teacher’s room.)

My Mom: “Hi, I’m [my mom’s name], [my name’s] mother.”

Teacher: “I’m Mr. [teacher’s name]. I’m the English teacher for freshman and sophomores.”

My Mom: “My daughter tells me you’ve let her read Romeo & Juliet out loud to the class?”

Teacher: “Yes, they actually pay attention.”

My Mom: “Speaking of paying attention, my daughter came home with a green hand the other day and said she did it in your class. Why didn’t you stop her?”

Teacher: “To be honest, ma’am, I was surprised she could have the attention span to color her entire hand with a marker and actually pay attention to the assignment at the same time.”

My Mom: “Why didn’t you stop her? Her hand was green for days!”

Teacher: “By not saying anything, I just taught your daughter never to color her hand again.”

(My mom was mad that other parents in the room started laughing, but it’s true. I never did it again.)

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What Up, I Got A Fowl Mouth

| Learning | April 17, 2013

(We’re in my computer class when the subject of Kidz Bop making a cover of the song “Thrift Shop” comes up.)

Classmate: “Ha! Can you imagine? ‘Walk into school, like, ‘What up, I got a lunch box!'”

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Teachers Don’t Cry

| Learning | April 17, 2013

(I work in a school district known for a high truancy rate, a high dropout rate, gang violence, and drugs. Many of the students are not motivated, but I try my best to engage students.)

Me: “Okay, guys, so for this essay—”

Class: *keeps talking*

Me: “Hey, we need to go over the requirements for—”

Class: *keeps talking*

Student #1: *gets up and walks out the door* “Going to the bathroom!”

Me: “Wait! You need a pass!”

Class: *keeps talking*

Me: “This essay is part of the school’s curriculum, and if you don’t do it, you’ll fail this class!”

Class: *keeps talking*

Student #2: “Do you ever feel like you’re the teacher in Freedom Writers?”

Me: “No. The students actually did their work in that movie.”

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Her Tone Rings Hollow

| Learning | April 16, 2013

(My class is working on homework before second period when someone’s phone randomly vibrates.)

Teacher: “Whose phone is vibrating?”

(I check my backpack and it’s not my phone. A few students also check their backpacks and find that their phones aren’t vibrating. The phone vibrates again.)

Teacher: “Whoever’s phone that is, can you please turn it off!?”

(Everyone looks around and the teacher gets very annoyed.)

Teacher: “For Christ’s sake, please turn off the d*** phone!”

(Everyone is now silently giggling and the teacher continues getting angry until the student helper points out the problem.)

Student Helper: “Mrs. [Name], it’s your husband calling you.”

(The teacher turns scarlet red and becomes wide-eyed while everyone laughs out loud.)

Teacher: “I’m sorry. If you’ll please excuse me…”

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America The Bountiful

| Learning | April 16, 2013

(My students are learning about the western hemisphere.)

Me: “Okay, let’s go over the continents. There’s—”

Student: “South America! North America!”

Me: “Good. And…Green—”

Student: “Green America!”

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