Desk Chairs & Derrieres

It’s November and I haven’t written an office referral all year. Today I wrote 3. My students claimed I was just being “cranky.” Hmmm I don’t think that was it…

Block 1= Awesome

Block 2= Not Awesome

I took my class to the library to check out books. As I watched the class file out and walk the 100 feet to the classroom, I saw two boys pretending to kick a girl who was sitting on the floor by her locker. I pulled all three of them aside, and lectured them about “play fighting” while the rest of my class got seated and took out their books.

As I’m finishing up my lecture, I hear from inside the room: 

Student: No. Don’t do it. Calm down.

I turn and look into the room and see one of my smallest, yet most volatile, students holding an entire student desk (yes, the kind with the chair attached to it) above his head poised to throw it.

Needless to say, I lost it. There was lots of yelling involved about “butts in chairs” and… long story short- my students were afraid to breathe too loudly for the remainder of the period.

Block 3= Not awesome

Me: You need to take off that pacifier necklace. I told you yesterday that you were not allowed to wear it, and now I’m telling you again. I don’t want to see it around your neck, and I don’t want to see it in your mouth.

Boy Student: I don’t want to see it in your vag…

Me: That is completely inappropriate.

Boy Student: …with your Skittle colored pubes.

Later that same boy was in the library looking at a teen magazine with another boy and I overheard…

Boy Student: Yep. I’d bang her. And her. Not her, but I’d bang her.

As we were leaving through the double doors of the library, I noticed one of my pervy boys was hiding behind the door on the left behind a friend of his, who was waiting to come in.  Just as I passed the doors, I  lean my head around to tell him to get back into our line, and he pulls his friends pants down around his ankles. (I’m 98% sure his friend was a willing participant in the shenanigans due to the fact that as he reached to pull his pants back up, I noticed that his belt was undone, and his pants were un zipped.)

Seriously?

Block 4= Awesome.

I suppose the day could have been worse. My neighboring teacher found this gem waiting for her on her desk.

Random Stuff With a Side of Porn

Here are some random conversations that have taken place over the past couple of days:

Sometimes when I have my classroom windows and door open at the same time, it causes a wind tunnel in my room. On really windy days, like yesterday, my ceiling tiles will catch the breeze, lift up an inch or so, then slam back down into place.

Student: “Miss Lewis, what was that?”

Me: “Oh, you know. Sometimes when I have a really naughty student, I hogtie them then shove them up into the ceiling so they can think about the bad choices they’ve made.”

Student: “Oh. You mean like B–?”  (B—is a student who is currently suspended for fighting last week.)

Me: “Yes. Like B—he’s going to be up there for a while because he has some serious thinking to do.”

After that, every time the tiles slammed, the students would look up at the ceiling and yell, “Cut it out B—!”

Today, there was less wind so the ceiling was quiet.

Student: “Miss Lewis, B—is really quiet today.”

Me: “That’s because he’s doing some serious thinking. He’s seen the error of his way.”

Student: “Good. No offense, but he was kind of a turd.”

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High Adventure Thursday

Let me apologize in advance for the length of this post, but today was just that ridiculous.

First we had Friday the 13th– that day was so-so.  Then we had the full moon- everyone was on high alert.  Now with this upcoming Saturday’s forecast- partly cloudy with a possible chance of rapture- Look Out!

My friend Erica likes to refer to Thursdays as “High Adventure Thursdays” and today was no exception.

This morning went pretty well, we are reading The Outsiders and the kids would give their right arm to do anything Outsiders related, but by mid-morning, things started to get… interesting.

Several of our students have been on edge this whole week as a result to an incident that happened in the neighborhood last week.  When middle schoolers are on edge, they go bat-shit crazy.

As 4th block was beginning, I overheard several kids talking about how angry they were because there was supposed to be a food fight at lunch today. (Our 8th graders currently have assigned seating at lunch do to a lackluster food fight attempt that occurred a few weeks prior.) The overall consensus of my class wa that they thought their peers were being dumb and they didn’t want to have to have assigned seats for the rest of the year.

Me: “Wait, what?  Whose brilliant idea was it to have a food fight when it will be obvious to tell who’s involved because we know exactly where everyone is sitting?”

Student:  “I know.  They’re all stupid.  They’re going to ruin the rest of the year.”

Me:  “It sure sounds like it.  You might want to remind your friends that last time this happened everyone got punished.”

Student:  “I know.  But this one’s supposed to be huge.”

At this point the students stopped talking about it and began working. I circled the room a couple of times and before going to my desk a stopped to talk to a student who was clearly upset.  She quickly told me that she was worried about a girl who was supposed to be beat up today.  She said the name of the girl and had a few choice words for the girls who were supposed to go after her.

I made my way to my desk and sent an email to our 8th grade administrator and our Dean of Students informing them both that there was a food fight scheduled for lunch, as well as a premeditated attack.

A few minutes later an administrator entered my classroom.

Students:  All stopped what they were doing and were all now on high alert.

Administrator: “So who was talking about the food fight?”  

Students:  Who live by the code: “snitches end up in ditches,” were all staring at me.

I explained, as best I could, that my students were only expressing their concern about the pending doom that was about to befall them… yadda, yadda, yadda…

Administrator:  “So who was talking about it?”

Me:  “It was all of them.  They all know about it.”  I repeated the information for a 2nd time.

Administrator: “So who was talking about it?”

Me:  For a 3rd time I informed him that all of them know about it.  I then gave him the name of the student and said, “He actually used the words ‘food fight’.  You could talk to him.”

The administrator took the student into the hallway for a little chat. (I was later told, by a couple of my students who were working in the hallway, that the administrator said to him, “So, Miss Lewis tells me that YOU are planning on starting a food fight at lunch today.”  -So NOT what I said.)

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Some Children Should be Seen, Not Heard

Today was the last day of Term 5.  That means only 6 more weeks of school.  This is the time of year when I notice how far a great number of my students have come in regards to maturity.

I see little things every day that make me proud of my students. 

Example:

We were playing a game today and the kids had to make their own teams. Two girls and a boy, who are pretty popular huddled together, when the boy looked across the room and say “that kid” (the one who constantly gets on his classmates nerves by making  comments that imply he is smarter than everyone else).  Without even asking the two girls, the boy invites “that kid” to join their team.  Even as the girls begin to protest, he ignores them and orders them to pull up another desk. 

I just smile to myself and think, “This is one kid I don’t have to worry about. When it comes down to it, he knows how to make good choices.

On the other hand, this is also the time of year when I have trouble controlling my rage due to the fact that some of my students have not grown at all.  In fact, I would find it safe to say some of them have actually digressed.  I continue to see and hear things that completely blow my mind.  These are the students I do worry about.

Example 1:

While reading part the The Hunger Games, the main character learns some very devastating news, and turns to “the bottle” as a result.  The next morning, as a result of hearing said news, and consuming said alcohol, she is a weeping mess.

Student: “So she’s like hungover?”

Me: “Yep.  She had a really rough night last night.”

Student:  “So girls get all emotional when they’re hungover?”

Girl Student:  “No!  I don’t.”

Me:  “Wow.  You didn’t even have to think about that one.  There was no hesitation at all.”

Realizing what she had just said, she stares at me for a minute.

Girl Student:  “Miss Lewis, are you mad at me?”

Me:  “No.  I’m just extremely disappointed.  It’s going to be really hard for me to look at you the same.  I just thought you were smarter than that, and I’m really disappointed about the decisions you’ve made.  Really disappointed.”

Girl Student:  “Well, don’t be mad at me.  You should be mad at my mom.”

This is the kind of thing that makes me worry about my students.

Example 2:

A student, whom I have not seen for over two weeks, shows up in my class today.  Aside from excessive talking, and being goofy, my boys this year are pretty good; this student- not so much.

He shows up in my class and manages to do fairly well for the first part of class- granted we were playing a game which kept everyone so busy, he had no one to entertain- but after we return from lunch?  Oh boy.  He’s in my room for less than two minutes when I hear him say…

Student:  “Are you kidding me?  You’ve never done that?  You’ve never eaten chocolate out of a girl’s butt crack?  Well, I guess I only tried it once, but I had to stop because she tried to shit on my face.”

Seriously?  What in the world am I supposed to do with this kid?  

The best part- the student could not figure out why he was being sent to the office…  😦

Substitute = Epic Fail

Quote of the Day:  While playing a game of Scattergories ( The topic: “type of fish,” the letter: “T.”)  I’m walking around the room when I over hear…

Student: “Oh, oh, twat!  Oh wait.  I was thinking things that smell like fish.”

Gross!

So…yesterday  I took a sick day, a respite if you will. It was either that, or end up doing time for laying hands on children. As individuals, I love all my 8th graders this year. Working with them one-on-one they can be funny, have great stories, and are generally pleasant. As a group however?  Look out. One of my coworkers once said it best, “Anyone can be great to work with one-on-one. Even a serial killer.” 

After looking over the notes my substitute left, I drew up a nice long detention list on the board. I was more that content with the fact that several the kids on the list, decided to participate in the student organized “8th Grade Skip Today.”

 These are the notes my sub left for me:

Block 1:  Went well.  They all finished their work packets and should have had plenty of time to do the blog entry.

Block 2: They were very disrespectful and rude. Particularly O, M, and C.  I have never taught such mean, nasty girls.  They should be seriously reprimanded.  I ended up sending O and M to the office.  (Students told me O flipped out after she “saw my sub wipe a booger on my desk. Hmmm… still not sure how I would have handled that.) N and G were particularly off task. (After some interrogation, my students turned on one another and informed me that the subject of my sub’s sexuality was the topic of student discussion/disrespectful behavior. I was pissed.)

Block 3: This class was very well-behaved and worked well for the most part.  Everyone finished the worksheet and most did the blog as well.

Block 4:  Lots of angry girls in this class huh?  Many refused to read.  I kicked D out for saying “f–k you” three times, loudly.  (The sub had asked the student to read a paragraph out loud. He didn’t want to.) They all had plenty of time to work, so if they didn’t get done it is because they refused to work. K, T, and J were particularly unproductive and disrespectful.  Though I’m sure that is nothing new.  K and T both blatantly cheated after doing nothing the whole period.

>This post is brought to you by The Jersey Shore

>How do I describe a day like today? For some reason the phrase “shit storm” comes to mind.

Block 1: Ok. 1st Block wasn’t too bad. I did have to confiscate several sheets of blank address labels. A student had stolen from the Science room (the teacher was gone and had a substitute) and had passed them out to several other kids who were now wearing them as mustaches. At the time I was really annoyed, but if I had known how the rest of the day was going to turn out, I would have let the whole class make fake mustaches and probably fake eyebrows as well.

Block 2: Tired of hearing the kids continuously break out into discussions regarding the crazy girl fight last week, I had to lay down the law. I reminded them that in my classroom, we do not engage in fighting and we do not talk about fighting. I told them if I catch them talking about school fights, they would have to call home and serve a lunch detention. A student responded:

Student: “What’s the big deal? It’s like 10 years later, and people still talk about 9/11.”

Me: “Don’t you dare compare a middle school girl fight to 9/11.” I was too frustrated to say anything else so I made the kids take a test.

Block 3: Although I made it through the Block without incident, as soon as I dismissed the class, all hell broke loose. In less than 5 seconds of the dismissal bell, I found myself diving through a crowd of 100 8th graders. I made it to the center of the chaos to find two girls on the floor. The 1st one was on her back on top of a teacher who had her restrained so she could no longer hit him. The 2nd girl, who is being pulled away by two other teachers, has both hands tightly gripped into the 1st girl’s hair. As the teachers begin to make some headway in separating the two, the 1st girl grabs the 2nd girl’s leg. The two teachers are now dragging all three of them down the hall while I am trying to hold back crowd. That’s when I notice a boy is repeatedly kicking the girl who is restrained. With one hand, I continue to hold back the crowd, while I pin the boy against the lockers with the other. He continues to kick her until I am able to get my body in between them. By then administration has arrived and I am off to write my 1st office referral of the day.

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>Words that start with O

>I spent most of last week at a professional development conference in Atlanta- hence the absence of recent postings- but I’m sad to say that, upon my return, it didn’t take long to get back into the swing of middle school life… especially when I overhear conversations in the hallway like this:

Administrator: “So, do you think you can do that?”

Student: “No.”

Administrator: “No? You don’t think you can do that?”

Student: “No.”

Administrator: “Really? You can’t? You can’t make sure that in your science class you say ‘organism’ instead of ‘orgasm’?”

Student: “Hee hee hee. No.”

Ah, it’s good to be back.