Something happened today that was one of the most hilarious yet saddening events of my life!! In the afterschool program, the other student teacher and I had devised a plan for splitting up the rather large group of students. I think I spoke to this in a previous post, but for whatever reason, the students never want to be in my room. I honestly think it is because of my no-nonsense approach to classroom management. If you are doing what you should be doing, we will have the best time, but if you are not it won’t be that way at all. If you can’t show me that you can handle the responsibility that comes with being a 5th grader, than you cannot enjoy the things that responsible and respectful 5th graders enjoy.
Back to the story…so we came up with a plan so that the students that were with me one week would rotate to Miss S’s room and her students would then rotate to my room. We put them on a 1 week rotation so we wouldn’t have to worry about students asking us everyday if they could be in her room; everyone would get there chance.
Well today was the day that our classes were supposed to rotate. Before we left to go down to the classrooms, the coordinator of the program came to us with a “revised” class list that he created. He wanted to split certain students up and also to put an end to the ingenious rotation plan we created. As soon as he said that, Miss. S and I knew that this was going to get real ugly!!! So we had my CT, who also works in the program, announce the changes. We didn’t want to have anything to do with it! She is a tell-it-like-it-is kind of lady, so she wasn’t to concerned about their reactions. She called one group of students, the ones that would be in my classroom to line up at the door. Then she struck the knock-out blow….she told them they would all be in MY classroom!!!! AAAAAAAHHHHHHHH!!!! You would’ve thought they found out they were being shipped to the moon! I don’t think I’ve ever seen such long faces before in my life!! So while the students in my room were in deep mourning, the students in Miss. S’s room were having the celebration of their lives. They were bragging to my kids like they just swept the opposing team in the NCAA Championships!! INCREDIBLE!!! This was hilarious, but I’m not gonna lie, I felt kind of sad too! The reaction that these kids had to being in my classroom; the huffing, puffing, and stomping down the hallway along with comments like “I don’t want to be in your room”, “Man, I’m not coming back to this program if I have to be with her!!” in addition to a few tears, really made me feel bad. I have never said a mean or cruel word to these students, so to hear these comments dished to me, I was hurt.
I have high expectations for my students…end of story. I wish they didn’t dread being in my room, but it is what it is. They know that when they come into my room, though, that I am totally committed to making sure they understand the content, become more responsible and are socially and emotionally well. If this happens to exclude them liking me, oh well. It has really taken me 7 weeks to utter those words and actually mean it. I still get sad when I hear the discontent some feel, but at the end of the day, I know that I my goal is to give them what they need. Their words may hurt sometimes, but as long as they don’t start throwing sticks and stones at me, I’ll be good!