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Friday, February 18, 2011


Any teacher or former teacher has heard so many things out of the mouths of kids that if all of us combined them into a book, that book would be as big as the earth.
The list I am writing is only a partial list for it would take me a long time to sit down and think what was said during thirty five years of teaching. I chose the above picture for it shows the innocence that my students used to have. And trust me when I say that, not all of them were angels either. But what came out of their mouths at times was so hilarious.  The following was said by second graders.

*I was teaching a unit about homes. And we talked about different types of homes. The next day, I brought in a book about Biltmore, the Vanderbilt castle in North Carolina. As I kept turning the pages, the kids were really interested in looking at the pictures. But all of the pictures in the book were in black and white. All of a sudden a boy said he had a question. He looked straight at me and said, "Were people gray back then?" Thought I would lose it. Had to explain that a long time ago there were only black and white photos but people were different colors just like we are. He still was confused.

*We had just seen the movie, The Wizard of Oz: I made a list of the characters and animals on the board.
The idea was to have the kids help me count how many of each. Things went well until we came to the flying monkeys. A boy raised his hand and said, "I know! Too many!" Had to agree plus when I was a kid, they scared me and no way did I want to count them either.

*I had given the kids chewing gum and told them that if the principal came into the room, to either keep the gum in their mouths or to spit it out and put it in a piece of paper. Lo and behold, right after I said that, in walked the principal! She had wanted to talk to me about something but I saw her eyes rest on one boy.
When I saw her glance, I was mortified for this boy had a giant wad of gum stuck right on top of his head!
I was guilty [she hated kids with gum] and he was plain out guilty. I asked him right there and then, "Why did you do that?" His reply: "I don't know!" Next day he came to school with the front top of his hair gone; his mother had to cut it off in a semi-circle. Oh my.

*One little girl was obsessed with checking my bracelets. She looked at them all of the time. I asked her what she was doing and she said, "I'm looking to see if you lost any stones." From then on, she became my  bracelet checker the rest of the year.

*One day I came in with my long hair pulled back into a ponytail. Kids watch and look at everything a teacher does. A little girl burst out, "Your hair doesn't look good that way!" A few minutes later, I took out the rubber band and my hair went every which way but loose. I heard her say, "Put your hair back in a ponytail. It looks awful!"

*I always wore high heels to school. Always. One girl at the first of school came up to me and said, "I know why your name is Mrs. Heels! It's because you wear high heels." I looked at her and said, "That is not my name.

*One morning during reading, an impatient boy rushed over to me. Said he didn't sleep well the night before. I asked him why and he replied, "My dad was out of town and my mom's boyfriend slept on the couch with her." I had to turn my head. And pray that none of the kids took that story home.

*It was in May of one year and so hot in the classroom. The kids were sweltering and so was I. One boy started to take off his shirt right there and then. I had to tell him that he couldn't do that in the classroom.
He said, "Why not? My mom does it!"

*We  were outside during recess and some kids were just sitting on a bench. One boy looked at me and asked, "Are you married?" I said yes and he said, "That's a shame. I was going to marry you. And so was my dad."

* One morning as I was putting the morning work on the board, an excited boy got out of his seat and came rushing up front to me. "Why are you putting all of that stuff on the board? I am too tired to do it!"

*I had one of those problem kids who wanted all the attention. He would distract, distract, distract! After several days of this, I told him that I would put him on a double dare: If he were good for a week, I'd take him to eat at a fast food restaurant [you could do that then] and he had a shock look. The week went by and he was as good as gold! And after asking his mother and my principal, I took him out to eat. "This is so cool!" he said. "I'm going to act up more so we can do this again."

*It was the first day of school. I was going over the rules of the room when a blonde haired boy raised his hand and said, "Can I move up front all by myself?" I asked him if something was wrong or if someone was bothering him. "Nope!," he said. "I just don't want to get in trouble."

*A little girl came up to me when everyone else was doing math. She got real close and whispered in my ear, "I hate math you know! Can I just sit here with you? That way I won't have to do it."

*I was checking to see who had their homework; all but two raised their hands. One girl said, "I had to go to church and then when we got home, I had to do other stuff." I told her that she could make it up and she was fine. But the other child, a boy, told me, " I just didn't want to do it!" I had to explain that he had to and that everyone else had except the girl. "Well, I'll think about it." He never made it out of second grade that year.

End of part one.

Sherry Hill 

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