. Regurgitated Alpha Bits: September 2010

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Never Leave a Man Behind

My students were rotating from two doors away to my room for science. As the last few stragglers climbed down the stairs, a little girl dropped her massive binder and papers went hither and yon with the wind.

Lou, of identity crisis fame, popped up from behind the stairs, threw one hand in the air to get my attention and yelled,

We'll be there in a sec, Mrs. Lee. We've got a folder down! Send reinforcements!

I think I'm gonna like him.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Identity Crisis

My teaching partner told a funny story yesterday about one of our kids.

On Fridays, students who have done their work and largely made positive behavior choices for the week get rewarded by participating in a “Fun Friday’ activity, which usually consists of turning them loose on the playground for 20 minutes…

also known as Nirvana.

Those students who need to complete work or make better behavior choices remain in a classroom to continue with academics in Study Hall…

also known as AAaawwWW Darn.

Yesterday, Lou was one of the students in Study Hall with my teaching partner. He asked permission to go to the restroom and really looked like it was an emergency so she dismissed him to go. Lou is a pretty impulsive, immature, but generally sweet. Although he’s had some troubles at school in the past, he’s doing well so far this year, outside of whatever landed him in Study Hall. So off he went, one hand pinching off any unintended leaks and the other out in front of him like football player ready to crash through the defensive line.

And he was gone.

And gone.

And gone.

When she became concerned about his whereabouts, she sent out a scout to track him down and within seconds he was safely returned to the classroom. He sheepishly stood in front of her and whispered:

“Sorry I took so long. I… I…”

He what, go lost? Was playing around? Decided to take a mini-break to Cancun?


OooOOOhhh, he had an accident. Got it! His expression looked like he’d had an accident, but his pants didn’t. Where’s the splotch? Was it the OTHER kind of accident? (sniff sniff)

“…used the girls’ restroom.”


You see, this boy ran frantically to a restroom,

A restroom,

ANY restroom,

which happened to be for the ladies; however he did not realize this...


Once he found relief, he looked around and found horror. THIS was clearly the ladies’ room. Well, we assume he had to stay hidden in a stall until the coast was clear, which can take a while towards the end of the day…

also known as Restroom Rush Hour.


Friday, September 3, 2010

Belly Flop in The Pool of Shame

I’m just going to say it.

I’m afraid… but it needs to be said. Dare I say, it DESERVES to be said.


I llloo…

I loooovvvvv


There! I said it. (Please, please, puh-leeeeeez don’t let that jinx me.)

They are just so sweet and wonderful and I actually look forward to seeing their smiling little mugs every morning.

Why am I so enamored by them? Just yesterday, as I stood in front of my classroom door giving them directions (which they actually listened to!!), I watched one of my students from last year wander by us. He was completely tangled up in his jacket with one arm stuck straight up, his hood over his face (because the jacket was on backwards), and the other arm stuck in the zipper. Although he was putting up a pretty good fight, the jacket was clearly winning.

Maybe the jacket had some trick up its sleeve? (ha!)

Or possibly it was just some hood, taking advantage of the poor boy. (Somebody STOP me!)

And I looked at my new class and loved them even more.

So why ya swimmin’ in the Pool of Shame, Edna?

Well, old habits die hard. Is that a good excuse?

Last year we could give no leeway, no second chances, no flexibility at all when it came to behavior or else we suffered the consequences. So when I caught one of my boys whispering to his neighbor during my math lesson yesterday, I did not hesitate to nail him with a consequence, which he humbly accepted.

As we were leaving for recess, his neighbor came to me and said:

I know George shouldn’t have been talking to me but he was just telling me that you’re the smartest teacher he’s ever had.

And then she walked away, leaving me to drown in my giant pool of shame.