teacherlife

On my comparative success.

<This week, one of my best friends is in town. Last week, I was discussing the impending visit with a student of mine when this discussion happened.>
“So, who’s coming to visit?”
“One of my best friends.”
“You got more than one?”
“Yes, the one who’s coming to visit is a doctor in Baltimore, and then my other one lives in New York and works for Rolling Stone.”
<pause>
“Miss, do you just like, feel bad about yourself all the time?”

On deciding their futures in the worst way.

“Hey Miss.”
<Student walks up to me in the hall and hands me a note.>
It reads: My dad like the new tree you planted in your front yard and he wants you to email him the name of it. He’s so weird. Don’t tell me, he’s so embarrassing, just email him so he doesn’t like, call you in class.
“That’s not weird, it’s a really cool tree.”
“Miss, just email him. I don’t want to talk about it.”
“DO YOU NOT LIKE MY TREE?”
“See, I TOLD him you were gonna get weird about it!”
“Why aren’t you answering me? My tree isn’t good enough for you?”
“Yes, yes, it’s good enough, what’s it called?”
“A golden rain tree.”
“Why you won’t tell me the truth now?”
“I┬ádid – look it up.”
“If I look this up, and it’s not a tree, you have to give me a free 100.”
“Okay, but if you look it up and it IS a tree, and it’s MY tree, then you have to become an arborist so you never make this mistake again.”
“Bet.”
<Looks it up.>
“MAN, MISS! I don’t even know what an arborist is! Do they like, work on arms or boards?”
“Trees.”
“Oh.” <pause> “I’ve got to stop making bets with you…”

On making mistakes.

<I translated this from Spanish>
“Y’all are telling her not to skip, but you guys skipped all the time!”
“Yes, but they learned from their mistakes.”
“Yeah, we learned! I don’t skip anymore!”
“You need to learn!”
“I’m gonna learn from my mistakes, but just not now. Like, later.”

On eternity.

“Miss VanSickle, the next time you talk to God, can you tell him to make sure he lets me into heaven?”
“No, because then I have to deal with you for all eternity.”
“I’m’a move in right next door to you! And then I’m gonna take you to visit all the hermit crabs and hamsters I killed on accident.”
“You’ll be like, doing your thing, and then I—- gon’ pop out of the cloud like, ‘Hey Miiiiiiiiissssss.'”
“No.”
“Yes. I’m gonna move in on the other side, so it’ll be like I—-, then you, then me.”
“And you can’t touch us or you’ll get banished and you’ll have to be nice to us forever!”
“Miss VanSickle’s gonna end up in Hell, y’all.”

On seeing me again

<While filling up at Quiktrip, I ran into a former student.>
“Miss VanSickle!”
“Hey, baby, how are you?”
“I’m good Miss, I’m good. I wasn’t sure it was you, y’know?”
“I know, I look different.”
“I know, I was like, ‘Damn, that girl looks like a younger hotter version of Miss V, and then you turned and I saw your tattoo.”
“Thanks?”
“It’s a compliment.”
“If you have to say it…but even if I’m hotter, why do you think I looked older when I taught you? Because the last time I had you, I was like, 24, and now I’m almost 30.”
“I know where you’re going with this, and I don’t like it.”
“It was your fault.”
“See, I said I didn’t like it…”

On Dr. Seuss consequences.

<I had my students practice STAAR strategies with picture books last week and this was overheard.>
“Aw, MAN, he straight up RATTED on that star-bellied-thingy. I’d cut him.”
“Oh, and look, they’re going to end up friends. Because this is a book for kids.”
“What can I say, man? Sneetches get beaches.”

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On what we have in common.

“Guys, c’mon, STAAR isn’t a race where you need to beat each other, we can all be successful.
<rolls eyes> “Yeah, c’mon guys, we can beat the STAAR *together!*”
“Thanks for that facetiousness.”
“You’re welcome.”
“You right though, Miss, we all come from Harambe.”

On Fbook personalities

<Today, to infuse some levity into my lesson on theme, I included a bonus warm up by asking them to identify the theme of Pastor Fred’s video.>

“That’s me. That’s me in 10 years.”
“10 years? That’s me tomorrow.”
“He know he right. He know.”

On returning compliments.

<Today, I told all my classes that I love them and they’re the reason I come to work. These are two of the responses I got.>

“Aw, thanks, Miss. You’re my favorite English teacher this year.”

“Nice. I’m’a go rate you on Yelp. 10 out of 10. Would recommend.”