Adventures in Teaching:
Kids Are Really Weird, and I LOVE IT!
“Children see magic because they look for it.”
– Christopher Moore
Over the years, I’ve worked with a TON of children. I’ve been a nanny and a babysitter. I’ve been both a private and volunteer tutor. I’ve worked at three daycare centers. I completed student teaching clinicals and rotations in college. I’ve been a Girl Scout Troop leader and co-leader, helped run a kids’ book club, and taught Sunday school. Last but not least, I’m getting ready to finish my tenth year of teaching. TEN YEARS. WHAT.
Anyway, one time I actually whipped out my calculator (um, my calculator app) and did the math. I figured out that I’ve worked with about 662 kids in the past fifteen years. Some of those kids are GROWN ADULTS now.
My first ever elementary school class is now finishing up their freshman year of college. This absolutely blows my mind. BUT those aren’t even the kids that make me feel the oldest… When I was 19, I was in charge of a summer elementary school room at a daycare. A thirteen year old was in that group. That means HE’S NOW 26 OR 27. Where in the world has all the time gone?
If all this time around children has taught me anything, it’s this: KIDS ARE HILARIOUS. I’ve seen a lot of shenanigans, hijinks, and buffoonery in my day. I finally began recording some of the crazy things that my kids said when I broke down and got a Facebook page in 2009. Just for you, Dear Reader, I have scoured my timeline and my journals to share with you the best of the best. These are all 100% real –and some just happened last week.
What Kids Think About “Miss Whitlock”
Kid: What’s wrong with your face?
Me: I didn’t feel like wearing any makeup today.
Kid: It’s freaking me out! You look like an alien from men in black!
Your hair is like a sponge, but more beautifuler.
Your hair is like a poodle’s ear, and I just want to pet you.
I’m going to steal a lock of your hair. SNIP! SNIP! When you least expect it!
Kid: *hugs me and buries his face in my cleavage*
Me: That’s not how we hug!
Kid: But you’re so soft and warm! And you smell so good! I could stay here all day!
Me: THAT’S NOT HOW WE HUG!
Kid: The smell of Miss Whitlock is good, but not as good as the act of Miss Whitlock.
Kid: That means you smell good, but even more than that you’re fun and awesome.
Me: Ummm… Thanks!
Me: It’s important to make personal connections to the stories we read. Did this one remind you of anything that’s happened in your life?
Kid: It reminds me of the time I was playing soccer and got hit in the nuts.
The sun is shining in my face. My eyeballs feel nauseous.
I don’t feel so good. I have a toothache in my knee.
Words of Wisdom:
Why do people name their kids crazy things, like Dakota? They’re just trying to prove how big the world is. My son will have a nice normal name, like “Michael Jackson Jordan.”
If it weren’t for dogs, money would be man’s best friend.
Sometimes I wish I was a cat. But then I don’t wish I was a cat because I want thumbs.
(Oh wait. That wasn’t from a kid. My BFF Katie Baker said that!)
(kid is trying to hook up a video game to the TV)
Me: So, do you have your engineering degree yet?
Kid: What are you talking about? I don’t even got my cursive license yet!
It is much more delightful to see a woman’s behind than a man’s, because all men and boys have hair on their butts.
I keep getting lost in my mind. I can’t help it. I just keep thinking about things. My soul is too creative for this math test.
(several kids were talking and playing in the hallway)
Me: Boys, should I go ahead and write your names on the board, or should I give you a warning?
Kid: Jesus would give us a second chance.
Me: Can’t argue with that.
Kid 1, Crying: He said I’m going to hell!
Kid 2, Angry: I’m sorry, but she is.
Me: Why in the world would you say such a thing?
Kid 2: Because she doesn’t believe in Santa, and Santa is Jesus’s grandpa.
(during an intense round of “Heads Up Seven Up”)
DO YOU THINK THIS IS SOME KIND OF GAME?!?!?
(note from a former parent of a second grader)
Dear Miss Whitlock,
Please change the all of the scores on the midterm progress report to “above grade level.” Colleges and universities look at these documents, and my child is getting into an Ivy League.
(during an observation with the assistant principal, after reading a story about presidents)
Me: Who can tell me what a carnation is?
Kid: But you said President McKinley kept one in his butthole every day!
Me: Buttonhole, dear. BUTTONHOLE.
Kid: Are you married?
Kid: Well, I can see why.
Kid: Oh, no! No! I meant because boys are gross, and why would you want one?
(waiting in line on picture day)
Kid: *grabs my boobs*
Me: *removes hands* DON’T EVER DO THAT AGAIN.
Kid: Whoa…. *stares intently into my cleavage*
Me: ARE YOU LISTENING TO ME?!? YOU CAN’T TOUCH LADIES THERE!!!
Kid: But Miss Whitlock, I gotta know…. Are those things real?
Kid: Because if all the sparkly jewels sewed to your shirt are real, then you must be rich!
Me: Ohhhhhhhh! *breathes sigh of relief*
(after running a mile in gym class)
I am never running again! Well, unless it’s when I’m a grown man and I have to save my baby from an alligator or something.
(Someone brought donuts in for a kid’s birthday)
HEY EVERYBODY! COME AND LOOK AT MY GLAZED HOLE!
Kid 1: Can jaguars eat plants?
Kid 2: No dummy, Jaguars are meatatarians!
Me: Line Leader, take us to the window at the end of the hall.
Kid: (singing) To the WINDOW, to the WALL! ‘Til the SWEAT drops down my –
Me: Do NOT finish that sentence.
Why do they call it “Laughing Cow” Cheese? I’ve been on a farm and seen those sucky things they use to get the milk out. I don’t think they would make a cow laugh!
You can’t make this stuff up. Being a teacher is a lot of work, but moments of love and laughter like these make it all worthwhile. Kids, y’all. Gotta love ’em!