Meet Me In The Middle?

| Working | November 1, 2015

(I am slightly autistic and tend to take things overly literal at times. I am being interviewed over the phone by a woman representing a service to provide tutors for clients. Since I will be working with children, personal details are needed for background checks.)

Interviewer: “Do you have a middle name?”

Me: “Yes.”

Interviewer: “Eh… uh… Am I… Am I supposed to guess it?”

Me: “Oh! Sorry, it’s [Middle Name].”

(I actually got the job!)

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Multiplied Waste

| Learning | August 31, 2015

(I’m talking to a fifth grader having trouble with word problems.)

Student: “So to do this one I need to add 20 over and over again 15 times?!”

Me: “Well, yes, but if you add something over and over again what are you doing?”

(The answer I’m looking for here is multiplication.)

Student: “Wasting your time?”

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Held A-Count-able

| Learning | August 18, 2015

(I work at a place that helps children improve their math and reading skills. They have to come in, do their work, and then come to the front desk to get one of the staff to mark their classwork. If there are mistakes, they have to correct them. I have just finished checking the corrections that one student made.)

Me: “All right, you did well; there’s only two or three in there that are still wrong.”

Student: “By two or three, you really mean 1000, don’t you?”

Me: *jokingly* “I know how to count.”

Student: “I do, too! I can’t believe you think that I can’t count! I’m in grade four and I learned counting in grade one!”

(Student looks down at the mistakes she still needs to fix.)

Student: “Oh! I think I just counted wrong.”

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Marked For Death

| Learning | May 25, 2015

(A student takes a marker from another student and hides it under the table.)

Me: “Put that marker back.”

Student: “I don’t have it.”

Me: “I saw you take it.”

Student: “No, you didn’t.”

Me: “Yes, I did. I’m a teacher. We see everything.”

Student: “Well, can you see death?”

Me: “Yes. And yours is coming very soon if you don’t give me that marker.”

(The student quickly handed back the marker.)

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An Understanding Of History Repeated

| Learning | April 27, 2015

(I work as a tutor, though this generally means that I’m an in-home teacher for children who cannot attend a conventional school for various reasons. In this particular instance, I am working with a 2nd grader who has just finished reading a very happy and inaccurate history lesson about early American colonization.)

Me: “So, what did you learn from this chapter?”

Student: “I learned that people came to America so they could worship God the way they wanted to and the Indians helped them. Afterwards, they all had a big party — Thanksgiving.”

Me: “Very good! So if you could travel back in time, would you want to be a colonist?”

Student: “No, it would be too much work.” *pause* “Actually, yes, I would.”

Me: “Why?”

Student: “Because there wouldn’t be that many people around so I could kill them all and take their land. Then I’d be rich.”

(At least he understands roughly 80% of modern western history…)

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