Do teachers ever leave school? Some younger students don’t think so! They think we stay and work on lessons and school decorations until they return the next morning. This past week, I stepped out of my vehicle to grab something at the Dollar Store when I heard one of my students from last year shout out his window in disbelief, “Mrs. Bargo! Is that you? Do you really come here?” I smiled and replied, “Yes it’s definitely me! I come here all the time!”
My teacher friends and I were out on the playground the other day when a little girl came up and whimpered, “I don’t wanna grow up and have to leave home when I’m fourteen!” We giggled, but we knew the reality was that she had overheard someone talking about growing older and moving away from home. Her understanding teacher reassured her that she wouldn’t have to move away from home that early. So, the child then ran away joyfully.
Children listen to most every word that is said around them, even when we think their mind is on something else. In fact, the (good or bad) vocabulary that we use at home is copied by the children and used elsewhere. I have a little girl in my class that is extremely smart. However, she lacks confidence in the fact that she can recognize her own name. Every time she goes to put something in her cubby she asks, “Is this my name?” I grin and say, “Yes, you know it is!” Well, on Friday I handed out their workbooks. I placed her workbook in front of her with her name on it. Using the vocabulary that she had learned at home this five year old politely asked, “Is this my name? I’m really curious!”
Back in the day, when I was in school, students who wanted to exert power over their classmates would brag…”My daddy can beat your daddy up! My mommy is gonna come whip you.” However, in today’s society, this is called bullying. We must be extremely cautious when we joke with our kids about what to say to their classmates. It was nothing twenty or thirty years ago to say, I’m gonna kill you when your classmate embarrassed you. Today, it is considered a real death threat no matter the age. Times have changed. We must teach our children a new way to handle their anger. First and foremost, students who feel they have been mistreated must talk to the adult in charge instead of making threats. I encourage you to discuss this with your child.