Saturday, May 24, 2008

Stress City

Good riddance to a bad week. I had 3 bad run-ins with kids that left me so angry.

Run 1: I've had issues in the past with students conveniently not showing up on exam day. Then they'd take weeks to make up the test. Two tests ago I started the new policy of, "you miss the test, you make it up during class the next day". This helped. Then this past test, I had 2 students mysteriously absent on test day, last period of the day. I checked ClassXP, and, gee, mine was the only class they were absent for. I decided to use technology to my advantage and pop a quick e-mail home to mom: "is there a reason your child is absent from my class today?". This got results, and it alerted the parents without sounding accusatory (they could have had a dentist appointment). Well, it turns out one kid lied to his mom about where he was, and I found out, and thus he got a zero for that test. So, here we are Friday, and he's in my class just sitting there fuming all period. One and a half hours. Yay. So, not really a "run-in", more like a long, drawn out sit-in with teenage angst of getting caught and having to sit and take it.

Run 2: One child is in NHS, and has been slacking off on the homework department and just general character department all year (okay, all 4 years). After a bunch of stuff had happened, the NHS sponsor would only let him wear the "stole" at graduation if he got letters from his 4 core teachers that he deserved it. So he comes in to my class and tries to good-naturedly try to bully me and guilt me into writing his letter. He still didn't get that it's his actions that brought this on. He still thought/thinks that "we" are doing this to him. That left a bad taste in my mouth.

Run 3: Oh my. We're doing projects during calculus class, so it's a wee bit more unstructured as a class period than I like or am used to. Some kids are doing videos, and one kid in particular doesn't have any of his equipment at school, so just basically sits in class and says he'll work on it during the weekend. That's all a side issue for this run-in. He comes into class on Friday and does not look physically well, so I basically don't bother him much. Towards the end of the period, one student had turned to him and asked what he was doing. Apparently, he had unbuttoned his pants and unzipped them a ways because he was uncomfortable and didn't want to put pressure on his stomach. Well, okay. So I catch this interaction, and say to him, "well just put your shirt over your pants, so we don't have to see your unbottoned pants." Then he starts arguing with me. I keep asking him to just pull his shirt over and that it's just not socially acceptable to sit there like that. This goes on for about 3 rounds as he's refusing. Then he suddenly turns all creepy and lowers his voice menacingly and leans forward to me and says, "I'll decide what is socially acceptable and I'm NOT going to button my pants so you can be on your power trip and .....". Oh my god. I was livid. I told him to stop talking to me and that he was being completely inappropriate and he just needed to either leave the room or button up his pants. Holy Cow. Jerk. Excuse me while I jump off my teacherly manner and just fume about the brat. Okay, deep breath and the knowledge that I only have to see him for 2 more days.

Anyhow. WooHoo for weekends, especially 3 day ones. And only 7 more school days.


  1. Anonymous10:34 AM

    That last student sounds ridiculous. I can never understand why we have to deal with students like that. Near the end the seniors always think that they are now ready to rule the world and rules don't apply to them.

    If he felt that bad, maybe he should have gone to the nurse.

    Sorry you had such a crappy week.

  2. Anonymous10:39 AM

    Here's to a good week next week!

  3. Anonymous1:34 PM

    Thank you both. Lots of sleep and perspective have already brought my anger down to a low boil.

    Ms. Cookie

  4. Isn't it amazing how much some students hate projects. It takes such intiative to do a project. A test is so easy; all you have to do is show up and put down some of the stuff you've acquired. Usually we ask enough info on a test that one can get a C or D without really trying. That's the science teacher's perspective.