. Regurgitated Alpha Bits: Short Sighted

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Short Sighted

Our fun little guy from this post has struck again.

He left school early the other day to get his eyes checked, and I guess they had to dilate them. They gave him those crazy old man sunglasses to put on to protect them from the bright sun for the next few hours.

Or days.


He came to school the next day, a full 18 hours after his eye dilation, claiming that his eye doctor insisted he wear them.

In perpetuity evidently, because he "can't see."

Before he even told us this, we saw him coming, gigantic glasses crookedly perched on his face, hands trailing along the wall like a man walking in the dark.

When he got to a hallway that he needed to cross, he put his hands out in front of him to ensure he didn't walk into anything now that he didn't have the security of the wall to protect him.

Once back to the wall, he made his way to one of our classrooms and stumbled in.

How he knew which room was correct or that we were even in there, since he was blind and all, are questions he could not answer.

We told him he needed a doctor's note for the glasses, but he insisted that he couldn't see. My partner made a deal with him that he could wear them for the first hour, but then the glasses had to go because they would be a huge distraction.

Then the kid asked to borrow a cane from the visually impaired classroom, since he needed one too now.

(THAT little gem was his mother's idea.)

We said no.

The first hour came and went, but Ray Charles wouldn't give up the glasses.

After hour two, I called my student teacher to tell her that he couldn't be on the playground if he "couldn't see," so send him to the office for recess. I was hoping boredom would persuade him to take them off.

She said that as we were talking on the phone, he was busy reading braille on the door signs.

I popped in the office at recess to see if I could get him to lose the glasses, and as I walked in he was reading the lunch menu on the wall.

Until he saw me. 

Then he began "reading" it with his hands.

It's not in braille.

No luck though. The glasses were staying on.

During his next class, they were working on computers. He just pretended to type while looking at the ceiling.

And he was moaning and swaying back and forth like Stevie Wonder on the piano.

Which made me mad. 

We have visually impaired students at our school, many of whom have been integrated into my classroom over the years. Their tenacity and spunk is to be admired. They keep up with their classmates despite the fact that they can't see well, or at all, and never complain.

And none of them moan.

His impression of a visually impaired student was disrespectful and he now officially crossed a line with me.

So I arranged with the teacher of the visually impaired class (who is also visually impaired) to meet with him. I was hoping he would set the kid straight about how rude, inappropriate and disrespectful his behavior was.

Luckily, his "vision" was better than mine when it came to handling this kid because he did better than that. He had him help teach a child with no vision how to do math. And he showed him all the tools they use to help the students be successful in a regular classroom. And he introduced him to his service dog and explained how she helps keep him safe out in a world he can't see very well. 

And he made him appreciate the gift that his vision is. 

Our young man took his glasses off when he left the room and we haven't seen them since.


Education Early Years UK said...

I remember as a kid I would pretend that I was visually impaired or had some eye defect that necessitates me to wear glasses. I used to think wearing glasses were awesome. Now as an adult I can hardly see without glasses. I wish my vision was as clear as they once were.

Miss Angel said...

I like how that teacher in the visually impaired class turned it around and made it into a learning experience. Not that you didn't handle it well.. but the teacher there is probably used to kids being a little disrespectful and jumped at the chance to educate someone.
Can't believe his mother suggested he borrow a white cane! LOL!

Unknown said...

Aren't Special Education teachers just phenomenal? Not that you or any other Gen Ed teachers are not... but this teacher just proved that they have different views (no pun intended) on educating children. I am in the middle of my educator training, and I am so excited that I, too, someday, will be able to help students like this. Thanks for your always entertaining stories :)