Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Finding value in our students' abilities

In teaching, maintaining a sense of humor, even when you're annoyed, is imperative. Students who have mastered the art of comic timing can turn an annoyed teacher into a smiling, laughing teacher in the blink of an eye. This was one such encounter with one of my students yesterday:

Me (to student): Turn around.
Student: Every now and then I get a little bit terrified and then I see the look in your eyes.
Me: *Shakes head and walks away smiling*
Student: My mom sang me that song.

You just can't be mad at a student that clever. His response felt like one of those "too perfectly scripted for TV" moments. I couldn't believe it happened. It just goes to show you that every kid that comes into our classroom has gifts and talents that don't always translate to a classroom setting and we need to be willing to work with those talents. Today, I tip my hat to my student who, despite not fitting inside the classroom mold that I and many teachers envision, knows how to deescalate a tense situation with a smile and a clever comeback.

Slice of Life is brought to you by Two Writing Teachers


  1. Love this story so much! And as the parent of a child who doesn't fit the classroom mold, I can't even tell you how heartening it is to see how you're able to respond!

  2. Totally funny! Good for you for letting the response go because it was gutsy and perfectly timed!

  3. You're right, look for 'all' the talents, not just the school-connected ones. He needs a comedy show!

  4. That was clever...and well handled by you.

  5. I love those kids. they drive you crazy but you can;t help but love them.

  6. That is awesome! I was frustrated today too and when I sat down with students to talk about our reading records, one dramatic voice said, "Oh look lots of people have been reading the children's classic "Please record your title weekly." Not as funny as the student's song, but it made me laugh and lightened the moment. Love the point you make about comedic timing.