The Good-sucker

This year, I have already called the office several times. Ordinarily, I would worry that it reflects on my classroom management. But the truth is, every time I call, it's because a kid has already been all the way through the five steps of my discipline plan, and the next step is a referral.

The first time I called was two weeks after school started. TWO WEEKS. I don't think that is a reflection on me; I think it a reflection on the student and his/her dedication to education.

Now, having talked to some administrators and other teachers, I know that the same kids I have issues with are also causing trouble in their other classes. What a relief: it's not just me!

The thing about these kids is that they not only get on my nerves, but they also take valuable learning time away from everyone else in the class. They take valuable teaching time away from ME. Plus, they are annoying.

Today I sent three out of my freshman reading class. Because here's the thing: there is this one kid--you know the type--who nobody likes. And my first instinct is to feel sorry for him, being all friendless and whatnot, until I found out that he is simply UNLIKEABLE.

That's kind of a horrible thing to say about a high school-aged kid, and there's a very small part of me that regrets saying it. The overwhelming majority of me, however, says that he brings it on himself. He does, too. Every single thing he says or does is calculated to get a rise out of someone, whether it's another student or me. He's good at it too, and then when he gets the expected reaction, he insists that HE is the victim. I've seen it with my own eyes.

So today, this kid was doing his usual thing, and two other kids started biting back at him. And the room is not big enough for me to give each of them their own corners and, frankly, no matter where I put this kid, he is going to start trouble.

This is no surprise, but once those three were out of the room, WE GOT SO MUCH DONE. Seriously, like two lessons-worth of stuff. And everyone was pleasant and nobody was annoyed and it was almost like the air was fresher and the birds were singing, that's how nice it was.

Then that kid came back and it was like a giant vacuum walked in the room and sucked everything good out of it. I hate that kid.


Joon said...

I know what you mean because I think is it wrong to get excited when your one "bad kid" or one that does absolutely NOTHING and you have to keep saying, "So and so, get busy" over and over is absent from school? We do get a lot done and I can totally hear those birds too. Then they come back to school. And it stinks.

angela said...

I feel for you? Students like that get on my nerves-- as a fellow student. I don't know if I have the grace or fortitude to deal with it. (but I hope I do, eventually)


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