Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Fourth Graders

Wellllll.... school starts in a week, and the teachers' meetings started today, so I thought it would be appropriate for a few words of wisdom from last year's fourth graders.

Last year's class always had to tell me about the most minor aches and pains, even though there was nothing I could do about it. Like, all day, every day. I guess they just wanted someone to know about it.

For example: 
Student: "Mrs. Hildebrand, my elbow hurts."
Me: "Ok, why does it hurt?"
Student: "I don't know. It just started hurting."
Me: "Hmm. Ok. Well tell me if it gets worse."
And on with the math lesson.

And so each day went.

Here are some of my favorites.

Complaint #1:
Student raises her hand from back of the room.
I call on her.
Student: "Mrs. Hildebrand, when I scratch my head, little white stuff falls out."
I try not to laugh.
Me: "Well, I think you should tell your mom about that. She'll know what to do."
Student: "Oh. Ok."

Complaint #2:
Student walks up to me.
Student: "Mrs. Hildebrand, my back hurts when I sit down, when I stand up, and when I walk around."
Me: "Ok, well it looks like you only have two options. Either lay down on the floor, or start running in circles around the classroom."
Student, with a confused look on his face: "Ummm, I guess I'll run?"
Me: "No, no, no. I'm just kidding. You'll have to keep sitting down. Just tell me if it gets worse."
Student: "Oh. Ok."

Complaint #3:
Student: "Mrs. Hildebrand, my right foot hurts."
Me: "Oh, why do you think it hurts?"
Student: "Well, I think it's because I woke up late this morning, and when I put my shoes on, I put my own left shoe on, but I put my little brother's left shoe on my right foot and I didn't notice it until I got to school, so now my foot is hurting."
Me: "Hmm, well, I don't think there's anything I can do about that for you. I guess next time make sure you put your own shoes on."
Student: "Oh. Ok."

Eventually, when a kid complained of something I could do nothing about, I just brought out my "magic wand":
Normally used for pointing to things on the whiteboard while keeping kids' attention, it was also useful for curing all aches and pains. As soon as I picked up the magic wand to use on an aching child, he or she was suddenly cured... or maybe just realized the pointlessness of complaining about a hurting pinky toe.

Let the school year begin!

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