Another tale of two classes

On Wednesdays I read to two classes right after lunch at Columbia. The first class was antsy as they lined up to go back to class. One little girl was a puddle of tears so I had her stand by me until the teacher arrived to escort the kids to their room. Although this class is usually rambunctious, the teacher gets them calmed down once back in the room and gets them ready for Mrs. Zody’s story. Today, they were having none of it.

One boy complained, over and over, that he had forgotten his sack lunch in the room, the teacher wasn’t there when he tried to get it, and he had to eat the school lunch which he didn’t like. He wanted his lunch from home. NOOOOOWWWW.

Another boy had not used lunch recess to use the restroom and so made a big issue about having to use the restroom NOOOOOWWWWW.

One of the more troublesome girls said she didn’t want to hear a story. That got a few others saying the same thing. When they wouldn’t be quiet, I told them I didn’t have to read a story and would leave. Which I did. I follow through on what I say I will do.

Since I am usually arriving at the second classroom around 12:30, the teacher was a bit surprised to see me at 12:15, but she welcomed me in, finished up her lesson, got the students seated on the floor, and they loved the story, Tacky the Penguin. There are lots of silly parts, which they laughingly joined in on. They were so well behaved that they got two stars on their star chart and are almost ready for another prize, their fourth one this school year. A couple of other classes have only gotten one prize thus far.

Although I did little to exert myself, I am home, sitting on the couch, weary of such turmoil in the school. As I departed through the front office, one of the first graders in a class I will see tomorrow, was sitting there, in timeout. Two pre kindergartners were brought in for fighting. PRE kindergarten, mind you! I can only surmise that the home life of these little ones is chaotic and disruptive, thus causing them to bring the same chaos and disruption to school.


8 responses to “Another tale of two classes

  1. It is personally hard when children don’t meet your expectations.It’s so much work, for you, or for the teacher you leave them to. How I admire what you do, and am sad for the children who can’t fit in. I couldn’t do it, and I wonder how sad it is to leave the disruptive ones behind.

    • It was hard to walk out. I’ve only done this a few times in the four years I’ve been a chaplain. It does seem to shake the students enough to have better behavior later on. I don’t know if that will happen this time, though, as this is a tough little group. I found out later that the class only has 17 students but it feels like 30 when I’m in the room, among them, when they become rowdy.

  2. I think you did the right thing. They were having none of it, or of anything, and the other class got prizes. It’s obviously it’s not you. Wears me out to think of it. 😦

  3. It’s tough being a teacher, tough being a volunteer!

    • This class has a first-year teacher, too. The other class I go to on Wednesdays has a seasoned veteran teacher who knows her stuff. I think schools like Columbia should have only the best experienced teachers, but so many of the really good ones want to teach in the easier schools. I can’t blame them.

  4. You were right, but sometimes it is so hard to be right.

  5. I would lose my mind. I truly respect what you are doing. Exhausting work and I’m so glad the good kids balance it out for you.


  6. Thank you for sharing 😊

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