Friday, January 6, 2012

I Just About Died...Laughing, That Is

I have stopped and started this post about fifteen times, trying to find the right words without creating an uproar. It all began yesterday with a very positive phone call with Will's teacher, during which she was telling me about how awesome Will has done at school this week. After several minutes of reveling in this conversation together, she says that now she needs to tell me something. Cue the dah dah daaaaaah music and subsequent breath-holding.

"Yesterday I was teaching this really boring math lesson", she says, "and really, it was boring. I was bored, the kids were bored, but we had to get through it. Nothing I could do except make it short. I look at Will and notice that he is writing on his slate, so I wander over to his desk to see what he's doing."

(Meanwhile, I'm turning blue from continuing to hold my breath)

"I look at his slate, and he has written on it, 'Please euthanize me.' I asked him if he knew what that meant and he said, 'Yes, it means kill something.' I asked him to please try to express his boredom in other terms, like I'm bored, this is lame, etc., rather than "euthanize me."

Before she could go any further, I started dying laughing because this is JUST. SO. WILL. While a statement like that would have most kids sitting in the guidance office in a jiffy and parents being called, that is totally par for the course with my son. He has his mama's drama combined with a seriously droll sense of humor blended with a great vocabulary.

Humor aside, what is so great about this is that his teacher GETS it. The fact that she accepts all her kids for who they are, and where they are is such a great attribute of hers. It's no secret that public education is rife with challenges, but the "homogenizing" is one of the things that really bothers me. Everyone has equal value of course, but we are all individuals, with unique strengths, weaknesses, quirks, etc., and when kids don't feel like they fit the standard mould, they tend to disengage.

I LOVE that our teacher does everything she can to create opportunities for these kids to be themselves and learn their own way, within the structure she has to abide by. It would be fantastic if our education system could do more of the same. Until that happens, my advice would to advocate for your child regardless of what kind of push back or bureaucracy you may encounter. It sounds easy in theory, but it isn't. No one wanted us to retain Will this year but we as parents felt that it had to happen, so it did. Best decision we ever made, and so very worth it.
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Grace Renee Williams said...

Too funny, I can definitely imagine his dramatic eye rolling complementing such a statement

bereccah5 said...

Oh I can ONLY imagine. He's a mess!

ReluctantMomma said...

as a teacher - I LOVE LOVE LOVE the spirit and sense of humor that your son brings to a classroom. He didn't interrupt or create a discipline issue - simply stated his feelings in an appropriate forum (his slate) and then continued on with the lesson -

If only all my (high school) students had the advanced vocabulary and self-control to do the same!!! LOVE IT!

bereccah5 said...

Thank you so much! I wish I could say he always acts with such um, decorum, but I'll take the moments when they come. He's quite the character and I've said it a million times, his teacher is a gift directly from heaven. We would be sunk without her!

Susan said...

I love this! No need for an overreaction; what a great teacher! And your son sounds amazing.

bereccah5 said...

Thank you! He's one of a kind, that's for sure. And his teacher ROCKS. :-)