Out of the mouths of babes

My first year of teaching was probably like a lot of peoples first year of teaching. I wasn't confident in my abilities to manage my kids' behaviors. One student I remember was Robert. He was very small for his age, but boy was he smart! He lived with his mom and I think she treated him like he was a little man rather than a little boy. His vocabulary was amazing for a 5 year old and his ability to reason was better than most adults. But, his behavior was atrocious. He wasn't mean spirited, but he didn't know how to shut up! He would talk all day long if I let him. And, when he did get in trouble, he would flash a little smile that would make most people melt (not me...I'm made out of stone!).

One day, he was just having an awful time keeping his mouth closed and staying on task. I called him over to me and asked him what was going on, why he was talking so much and not doing his work. He looked at me and said "I asked God to make me be good today, but I guess he wasn't listening. Maybe tomorrow he will listen to me." It took all I had not to laugh to death with him there. It made the day much better, even if he didn't stop talking!

Unfortunately, his mom moved him out of my class shortly after that incident. We were on year round then, so we had already been in school for about 4 months. His mom felt that he looked at me more like a friend than an authority figure (since I was female and the adults he was around were female) and she moved him into the 1st grade class taught by a male teacher. I was very sad when he left, but it did make it a lot quieter in there! If I remember correctly, he moved the next year and went to a new school. He should have graduated this spring from high school. I hope he has done well for himself, even if he can't stop talking!


  1. Wow, they let parents move kids like that??

    There is no way that would happen here. In fact, most of our district have taken to not even allowing parents to have input at all in teacher-student placements because they were having so many issues with it. This is across many, many districts in our county. It's kind of amazing to hear any district would allow parents that kind of control.

  2. That was 12 years ago, but it still happens. My first year at my new school, I had a student who was placed in my class. The mother didn't think I was a good teacher because I came from another school and because she was a good ass kisser to the principal, he moved her son after the second day of school. I can't complain, I got a pretty good kid while her son was a demon!

    We have teachers who hand pick where their students will go while the rest of us get the leftovers. Our principal was a jerk. He had his favorites, and if you weren't one of them, then you go the short end of the stick. Luckily he is gone now! On to #8!