Spoiler alert: I am back in America and have been for quite some time now.
I took some time off from the blogging world to regroup and focus on me for a while, ya know? Well, it was that and also my life got super boring once again.
But now I am on a new adventure called teaching second grade.
Another spoiler alert: teaching kids is really hard. and tiring. and crazy. and most days I wake up and I think to myself...
But really, it's going to be a great year.
To remind myself how much I love working with little kids that have to pee every five minutes and cry whenever someone "buts" them in line ("back in my day, we used to call that cutting") I think it's important that I share the funny things that they do.
So here goes.
We were in the middle of a math pre-assessment and all the kids were really struggling with it. I kept explaining to them that the things on this test were things that I was going to be teaching them later, and that I just wanted to see what they knew right now so they just needed to give it their best guess. One student in particular was just moaning and groaning through the entire thing. When I went over to check on him I tried to be as sweet as possible and I said, "Claudio, I know that this test is really hard and I know that you are getting tired. But I also know that you are a very smart boy and that you can give it your best for just a few more minutes." His response?
"I just want the fire Mario so bad!! I have all the other carts! I even have Princess Peach and I didn't even want her! And I can't focus on anything else because I just NEED the fire Mario!"
Yeah, apparently he was less worried about the difficulty of the test and more worried about his Mario Kart game.
*Mario Kart on the Wii is a recurring topic for Claudio and I. It usually sounds little something like this: "Class, who can tell me how many ones are in the number 28? Claudio?"
"Do you know what sound Yoshi makes? (insert Yoshi sound here)"
For one of our projects we colored little paper chameleons so they would blend in around our classroom. They had these little toes that were very difficult for my 7-year-olds to cut out, and many were amputated in the process. One of my kids came up to me distraught because he had cut off a toe and he was insistent that I tape it back on. After I did, I handed it back to him and he just stared at it. I thought he was upset because I just slapped a piece of tape on it and didn't bother to line it up to the correct toe socket.
Instead, he looked up with big eyes and said, "Teacher, this is amazing! You could be a doctor!"
We have centers time where the kids are in small groups working on literacy activities and only one group is working with me at a time. I have been trying to train my kids to not ask me questions during centers time, since I will be busy with one of the groups. We spent a whole hour practicing activities where they couldn't ask me questions. It was awesome. I love centers. Anyways, after one of our practices I asked my class, "What should I do if I have a question during centers. I know that I can't ask Miss Earl, but what is something else I could do?"
Barrett responds in all seriousness, "You could pray about it."
I have one little boy in my class who came straight from Mexico this year. He is very smart, but he doesn't speak a lick of English. Thankfully, about half of my class is native Spanish speakers, so they help me out quite a bit. There is just something so adorable about little kids speaking Spanish! Is that creepy to think so? Anyways, one of my little caucasians Elisia came to school one morning and she said to me, "My mom taught me how to say my name is Elisia in Spanish last night." I told her that was so great and maybe she could introduce herself to Octavio now.
A little bit later in the day we were walking to recess and I overheard her tell another Spanish speaker in our class, "oh yeah, I speak a little Spanish, too."
But here's the best part. As the kids are walking in to my room from lunch, I say, "Alright class, come in quietly and go directly to the rug." Elisia comes up and says, "Oh, don't worry Miss Earl, I'll tell Octavio what you said!"
She turns to him and in her best Taco Bell Chihuahua accent says, "When you get inside go straight to the rug." Surprisingly enough, Octavio didn't seem to understand her. It was awesome and oh-so-racist.