Thursday, March 31, 2005

What's in a name?

Well I have now substituted for every grade from K-12 in some capacity, be it in the grade school class room, Ag ED, Spanish, Art, PE, or music and I think I can easily say that the grade that I dislike the most is 7th.

I used to think that this was a grade that I adored until this year. Which is sad since my daughter will be a 7th grader next year. I used to teach Middle School/Junior High Youth Group and had a blast. But this group has trumped me.

The girls refuse to give me their real names, which I explained during wood shop could pose a problem if one of them happened to have an accident with the saw and I needed to contact a parent. Because I wouldn't know which child had really been injured. In music when they gave me different names I had no cute come back, of course I was thinking "should you happen to get stuck in the tuba....".

You know the funny thing is I have always been so proud of my name that whenever anyone asked me I was glad to tell them who I was. I was also proud to tell them that I was named after my dad. How many girls can say that! My daughter, though she likes to be called by her nickname, is always glad to give you her name and can even tell you that there is a saint with the same name. When I told her what the 7th grade class was pulling she asked the simple question. "why would they do that?" I had no answer.

I know that it should be about respect for the teacher or the sub but what about the pride in the name that the parent spent 9-months choosing for them? The whole thing bothers and upsets me.

I had to go and talk to the principal/superindentent about the situation. The whole 7th grade class now has Saturday school. And of course I am the bad guy. The one kid who bothered to say hello to me today said it with such sarcasm in her voice that I wish she hadn't bothered but because I didnt know her name I just let it go.

Right about now I'm kinda wishing I could change my name. The only problem is I like my name.


Reverend Ref + said...

I like your name -- it's a good name. It seems to me that these girls don't respect anyone -- themselves, their parents, their teachers, their classmates. It's these that I worry about. The ones who pretend nothing matters and then end up being abused. They've got five more years, hopefully they'll learn that before they are out on their own.

Jane Ellen+ said...

Either that, or it's a malicious power game they can play, just to see what they can get away with-- and in a group they'll pull stuff they'd never have the nerve to try individually. Sounds like you did just fine, sis.

I subbed for a few years (K-12, and across a wide economic and racial spectrum) before I went to seminary, so I can sympathize. The vast majority, something like 98%, of the kids I dealt with were great; but there were moments. . .

One of these days we'll have to compare notes: wait'll you hear about the 8th Grade From Hell.

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