. Regurgitated Alpha Bits: Elton John Knows Best

Friday, February 6, 2009

Elton John Knows Best

Oh Harvey, Harvey, Harvey...

You, me, and your constant behavior issues had called a truce as of late.

Why couldn't you have just quietly gotten in line at the end of recess?

What WERE you thinking?

Announcing that "Ms. Lee sucks" and that "she isn't even smart enough to do 2+2" miiiiiight not have been your best move this year.

You see, I don't care if you hold me in low regard but all the other kids in our class evidently DO care because they







You see, Harvey, even though YOU thought you were sharing your feelings in confidence with your friends, THEY thought you were mean-spirited and ratted you out before you could finish the word "two".

And have you forgotten Harvey, that next to soccer, the best played game on the playground is "Fastest Tattler in the West" and some of them are pretty darn quick on the draw, let me tell you.

In addition to ostracizing yourself, you gave me 30 students anxious to assuage my damaged feelings and therefore readily behaved like perfect little angels for the remainder of the day; not to mention how they believed their efforts would easily rank them higher than you in my esteem.

But all the drama that ensued the next day could have been avoided if, when I pulled you aside and asked you why you said those things and if I had done anything that we needed to talk about (to which you said no), if only you'd apologized rather than simply hanging your head and nodding like a sad mute….

Or when I pulled you aside at the end of the day to say that an apology would have been appropriate, and you still just nodded your head, we could have put this to rest.

But you didn't.

And you showed up the next morning, smiling and all full of "Good Morning, Ms. Lee's" while your classmates stared at you like you were a foreign object in our room, and I simply said, "Good morning, Harvey. The principal is waiting to speak with you."

And you hung your head and nodded your sad mute nod.

And now your continued disrespectful behavior, both in school and at home, has earned you a dressing-down by the principal, a phone call to your father who dressed you down in two languages, a week in the hole (aka - library detention), a twice-weekly visit with the counselor, and a spot front and center in our police department's behavior boot camp.

Elton John was right…

Sorry seems to be the hardest word


Anonymous said...

Wow, behavior bootcamp at the police department? Maybe that will scare some sense into him! What will he have to do?

Edna Lee said...

Hi Nicki!

It's run military-style with a lot of marching, Sir Yes Sirs, push-ups, and drilling. It's not all bad. Once they have the hard-stuff down and their behavior improves, they go rock climbing, learn how to dust for fingerprints, and work with the K-9 unit. The best part is, if he misbehaves at school, I get to call in his Sargeant who will handle the discipline for me right there at school. Just the threat of it has kept most of the kids I've had in this program in check.

kekelly said...

I am guess there is more to this story than Harvey is just saying, “You suck and can’t add”. If not then it seems the punishment does not fit the crime. When you stated, “Sorry seems to be the hardest word” where you referring to Harvey saying sorry to you or you saying sorry to Harvey for not coming up with a different intervention instead of tattling to the principal. It appears that you running and telling the principal might not have been the best route. Harvey may distrust all his teachers from now on. As a middle school teacher, I understand the constant bullying and verbal harassment students and teachers endure everyday. I do not ever allow students to put down or harass another student; if I am able, I take the time to have a learning experience from it. As an “out” lesbian teacher, I am constantly telling and explaining to students why it is wrong to tease or harass someone by saying, “you’re so gay” or “that’s so gay”. Words hurt, perhaps you needed to be the better person, and taken the time to talk to Harvey about why he chose the words he said. Maybe just maybe he would have learned more from that conversation than boot camp.

Edna Lee said...


I imagine you inferred that this was indeed not Harvey's first run-in with poor choices. As a matter of fact, he was well aware that these consequnces would result from his next infraction. He's got a long list of issues, both in school, at home, and with the police (hence, the boot camp.)

Before you jumped to the conclusion that I simply "ran to the principal and tattled," you should have used your reading comprehension skills a bit better. I did talk to Harvey about his choices, I did ask him if there was anything wrong or if I had offended him in some way (to which he said no), I did explain to him that his words hurt, and I did give him ample opportunities to apologize. I stated that in my post.

Please don't assume that I have not been working with professionals, or that I am indeed not a professional myself and don't smear me with your juvenile assertions that I "tattled" on a child. Furthermore, before you berate a fellow teacher online, ask some relevant questions about the situation and not just ones laced with judgements and venom like, "Maybe you should be the better person?"

I care about my students, as you would know if you followed my blog. I also care about my fellow teachers because I feel the vast majority of us went into this with our hearts in the right place. Even you.

Temper, Temper Kekelly. Maybe I deserved more than your veiled criticisms? You preach a good game about listening to others, but I don't see much practice of it here.

Anonymous said...

wow - talk about consequences !
at my school certain kids regularly swear at their teachers (yesterday i was told i could 'keep my f**n mouth shut' after sending for a deputy (apparently thats dobbing) and the same child hit me hard on the legs with a thrown plastic raquet. She is 10 - and her consequence was about 10 minutes in the office then back to class.
can i come to your school ??

Melissa B. said...

Oh, Harvey, Harvey, Harvey...you know better than to mess w/ Ms. Lee, don'tcha? Behavior boot camp? I'd draw a circle on the board and make him put his nose in it and stand there all day. Oh, that's right...I could get fired for such classroom management tactics. But they work! BTW…don’t forget Sx3 tomorrow. It has a Texas-sized theme. Something about armadillos?