Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Why Mrs. Hillbilly Mom Can't Have Nice Things

Kids can be so cruel.

Today in class, we analyzed data and made graphs to illustrate the results of our running water/soap bar erosion lab. I set out 10 rulers and 10 calculators. The kids were working in their lab groups, so I figured they could share. Why hand out a plethora of whackers if you can skate by with less?

One class had a group that hogged the rulers. I had a few of the good rulers left over from yesterday's session of measuring grooves carved into the soap. By good, I mean they are those clear, colored, hard-plastic rulers from The Devil's Playground. I seldom hand them out in large quantities, because they have holes in the middle, and make good pencil helicopters. They do, however, have centimeter and millimeter markings, which my old wooden rulers advertising good study habits do not.

I gave out four of the good rulers to a group right in front of my desk. They handled them with respect. Until a usurper crowded into their midst from another group. Just because he was finished, he thought he could retake his assigned seat. He began flirting in the manner of 14-year-old boys. Meaning that he picked and poked at the girls using the good rulers. Next thing you know, there's a CRACK! Then silence. Which is never a good thing in the classroom.

I asked what happened. Poker held up my clear pink ruler. In two pieces. He said, "I grabbed the end of her ruler, and I wouldn't let go. I didn't mean for it to break. Can I buy you a new one?"

Which was a nice thought, but I don't need kids buying me rulers. I need kids learning to respect the property of others. Meaning the property of Mrs. Hillbilly Mom.

By the end of the day, only nine calculators remained. I've had those calculators for five years. They cost $1 apiece at Save-A-Lot. They are not freebies used to garner votes, business, or popularity.

I sense a lack of guidance at home.


Jennifer said...

This sounds so like a conversation I had with my PE Teacher/Coach of a baby bro two days ago.

Lack of parental guidance at home and a lack of respect for others is what it is..

Hillbilly Mom said...

Listen to those of us in the trenches. We can see the future, and it ain't pretty.