Things my students have taught me: 1

Things you have to know about me:

  1. I’m honest
  2. I’m wildly sarcastic
  3. I’m moderately funny
  4. I enjoy historically based humor
  5. I call ’em like I see ’em
  6. I have a VERY low tolerance for bullsh*t
What I have learned this semester? None of these qualities are necessarily ideal for teaching elementary.

A little background: 
I started teaching as a high school social studies teacher. I was teaching 10th grade Civics and Free Enterprise and loved it. I was able to take kids who–according to some–“couldn’t learn” and make them learn something. Even if for some of them, all they learned was to hold themselves accountable for their actions. And that sh*t was cool. 

Unfortunately, due to circumstances out of my control (state takeover) I was forced to find a new job and my adventures in 5th grade began.

Fast forward.
Even though my experience teaching 5th grade has been somewhat…trying…I’m doing this whole “put positive things into the universe and you’ll get positive things back” thing.

So here it goes: awesome/hilarious things my students have taught me.

1. The American Revolution had nothing to do with Americans wanting liberation from the rule of Great Britain. Instead, it had everything to do with “George Washington and his goons wanting to attack New Jersey”.

2. If all else fails and you don’t know an answer, write an answer about pirates. Everybody loves pirates, right?

3. Whoever has the longest spinning spinner automatically gets the most respect for the rest of the day. This is an unchangeable and inflexible rule. 

4. You will always start the day with exactly one pencil that will be lost by 9 am. You will spend the rest of the day begging your classmates to borrow a pencil. No matter what.

5. There are few things better than a bag of Hot Fries and a Powerade for an after school snack.

6. If you ask to go to the bathroom and the teacher says no, just keep on asking in 3 minute intervals. The answer is still going to be no. 

7. Every single problem on the planet between 10 year olds can be solved in entirety with rap lyrics.

8. Most sarcasm is far beyond the grasp of any and all 5th graders. Sarcastic comments will be met with blank stares and unfulfilled expectations.

9. Taking away PE is about the worst punishment in the world, only to be topped by taking away recess.

10. Favorite lesson to teach so far: accountability. Sometimes the best lessons aren’t on the lesson plan.

Teaching 5th grade has been an eye-opening experience. Not everyday is great. Not everyday is bad. 10 year olds can be annoying, endearing, fascinating, mind boggling, sometimes rude, and sometimes understanding. 

Excited to see this chapter come to a close and watch a new chapter open next semester. Because that’s how I’ve resorted to living my life: one semester at a time.

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