Friday or Not

It's almost Friday and I don't have a pearl of chat to write up. This is even more pertinent in that I wrote a downer last week. Yesterday, I had a fantasy of a stand-up routine of a former teacher.

In Georgia, lawmakers have on more than one occasion discussed teachers having weapons in classrooms. We made incredible progress in Georgia but legislators have been busy improving the system. So education is taking a predictable nosedive.

This makes me think of a class that would take the teacher's Skinny Dip perfume out of her purse and spray it all over the room. The teacher would wake up and inquire who took her Skinny Dip. This was 1969. Supposedly she was drunk was the story. I never noticed her drunk and made an A in her class.

I cannot remember the subject of the class but I can tell you we sat down and talked the entire hour in our assigned seats of course. Any classwork was welcome to break the boredom. We got a magazine thing every few weeks. You could hear a fly buzz we were so occupied reading that thing and doing the crossword in the back.

I didn't allow kids to talk in the classroom. Imagine a kid that would not stop talking. The teacher would pull her gun and flip back the trigger and boom. I told you to stop talking!

The teacher would calmly push the Public Address system in the room and request the custodian to clean up the vomit from a few of the children and the school nurse with smelling salts for the student who thought they were the target. Those kids would be quiet. That is what shock can do for you.

What the custodian had been shot! You mean your warning shot had gone into the storage closet at the exact moment he was retrieving paper towels and liquid soap for the girls room.

You know they weren't delivering them to the boy's room. Yesterday, the boys flooded the bathroom with paper towels in the sink and emptied the soap containers. Every male in the school would enter and glide from wall to wall. The custodian caught the young history teacher gliding with his students and sent them all back to class.

I had tried to stop telling people I was a teacher. I retired in 2007 and 2010. At this point, I doubt I could control a class of children. Slack would not be the word for my approach. I can now sleep sitting up for about five minutes. I sort of know why the window of opportunity opened for the Skinny Dip caper.

But one time during a teacher work day, I jumped and hit the top of a high doorway like the kids. Those same kids who were told not to do that. On landing, I see another teacher. She just laughed at me. I can understand the history teacher gliding with the kids.

Despite the efforts of the legislature and the six gun salute curriculum that just happens to be exactly like that horrible common core curriculum and tests that evaluate whether teacher's cheat and whether students happen to know whatever hit the fancy of the governor, the kids are alright and the teachers are most days. But please, don't give them guns.

And some of this is made up. Hey, who stole my Skinny Dip?



Comments

  1. I think it is hard work to be a teacher; I admire those that attempt it and actually teach the students a thing or two; I'm thinking you were that kind of teacher. I remember years ago my mom telling a story about a teacher she had for history. Every day the students were required to answer a question posed to them in a journal they turned in to get graded overnight and returned the next day. My mom would answer the question as thoroughly as she could but always got C's for her effort. She asked a friend who got A's what her "secret" was. Her friend shared that the teacher never read what the students wrote. She looked at how much of the journal page was filled up. If it was all filled up, they got an "A" on the assignment. My mom started filling her pages with silly things after she answered the question and sure enough she started getting A's.

    Maybe not guns in classrooms but maybe someone else should have a gun? I don't know. It is such a touchy subject. I'm not in favor of guns and don't like that there may or may not be some here at the house. I do live in a state where open carry is okay. I do think though if those I truly loved were in danger, I just might......but then I just don't know.......

    betty

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    1. I've known of teachers grading that way. I had a teacher in high school who had trouble managing the class. She gave four humongous group projects which I wrote since everyone in my group was dumb as mud in my humble 15 year old mind. That's when I discovered if you let this incredibly cute guy read the report, you would get an A. He would read a line and grin at the teacher. It was ridiculous.
      I don't think much of having guns. You know how an incompetent is the worst sometimes with wanting to run things. I did work with some very nice people but some of them would be quite dangerous with a gun. Plus, I'm sure the kids could create some mischief with a teacher's gun.
      I did work several years where we had armed deputies and the kids came through a metal detector. It was probably safer than most schools in that the kids had been screened. In my teaching career, I only had one student I was very careful around.

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  2. Not sure how a gunman in a school could be stopped, it's sad that it even has happened.A shot fired at close range could go right through them and then who else bites the bullet?I taught in a behavioral classroom and worried a few times about the level of violence some might adhere to given the right weaponry.I had to put the stop on Axe sprays, they were obnoxious and made it hard to breathe.

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    1. I understand what you mean. In Georgia, they limit the class size of special ed classrooms and have an aide which helps immensely. The big problem is getting children in those classrooms that need help. It is a process. I don't know how things are now. They have been cutting school funds so much you know class sizes are getting way too big.
      When they were pushing "no child left behind", teachers got more support with discipline. Admins don't have tenure and few have the leadership skills to go with their cocktail party skills.

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  3. A gun in the classroom would be a really bad idea.
    Maybe you were the teacher sliding around in the bathroom?

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    1. A gun in the classroom is a very bad idea.

      I wish I would have been that teacher. When I was young, I was so uptight. I didn't become the best teacher I could be until I learned to chill a little.

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  4. I don't think a gun in a school would be okay what so ever, as too many things can surely go wrong. Especially if the teacher, principal, whatever is a gun happy nut job. Now maybe one filled with buck shot or a taser gun or a tranq dart gun, but they can all lead to bad outcomes too.

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    1. People are nuts about what they think a gun can do for them. Too much fantasy television where an old dude does kung fu like a 25 year old master. I'm not keen on guns at all. It's a shame, but security officers are in most schools now. They are unusually armed with stun guns they don't expect to use.

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  5. And to think I was afraid of wooden rulers! But then, in those days children were taught (at home) to respect teachers and elders in general. There was seldom a need for discipline beyond an occasional stink-eye. I know of more than one teacher who walked away from the career in disgust.
    You and the history teacher were just showing your inner-child - I bet it was exhilarating! Not to mention pretty cool in the eyes of the children ;-) Perhaps teachers should be equipped with paint guns and of course, a bottle of Skinny Dip!
    Did you make those delightful ladybugs?

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    1. If there had been more opportunity, I doubt I would have taught school. But I don't regret my career. Paint gun, I can see the kids hoping to be hit. They are quirky that way.

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  6. Schools suffer when the government gets too involved. Parents need to be more involved and work with educators. I had a college professor who came to Psych class drunk almost every day. It was a zoo.

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    1. For this teacher, I think the stress was too much. She was black and it was just after integration. Emotionally, I imagine it was difficult to move from Jim Crow to normal so quick for some. Plus in our county, the black school did not want to merge with us which is ironic. I had some great teachers before and after integration. Even as a kid, you sometimes notice something off with people.

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  7. I am glad that I came back. I had read this on the fly, thought I commented, but...lo and behold: nothing is here.

    I can remember how schools were so different when I was a kid, many moons ago. I went to school in Chicago K-4. It was very traditional and institutional. But, I had trouble with Math and my teacher felt I was not trying. She would not let me be a crossing guard because of it.

    For Fifth, I went to school in Ohio and then Texas. In Ohio, it was very cutting edge. A new, blended school, where the kids moved around for classes. The teachers were communal in everything. Texas? Whoa...shock. They still used paddles (No, not on me.)! Skirts were measured and girls sent home if they were too short. Boys had to have military style haircuts. This was 1969-1973. But, you know what? The teachers all taught. The kids all learned. There was control; everyone knew what to do and the kids had positive experiences in finding a niche. Teachers were accessible and supportive. My grades went up, and I was on the high-honour roll. I began reading poetry and writing in a journal. I was in Choir. I had confidence, because my teachers did.

    At the end of 8th grade, we moved back to Chicago. The teachers were on strike when we got back to Illinois. It made an impression on me. My Grampy moved us to the suburbs. High school went well, but I really wished we had stayed in Texas. Everyone knew the rules and followed the rules, and we all worked together. There was accountability, but there was pride. It definitely made a lifelong impact on me. And I thank Mr. Green, Mr. Squires, Mrs. Bradley, Mr. Reid, Mr. Roberts, Miss Jones, and all of the others.

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  8. A teacher's life can be most rewarding where students excel. But there were situations where teachers were threatened, had their cars scratched or were even assaulted. Would having guns deter the assault on teachers? Perhaps, knowing the danger it might make the rough and tough students think twice. On the other hand it is better not to provoke them into bringing illegally their own guns. It might lead to gun fights with armed teachers with the added danger of casualties to other innocents. No guns for teachers will be better.

    Hank

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