Out Of The Mouths Of…

As the school year is winding down, I find myself dreaming about the hot weather of the coming summer, which is weird, because before I became a teacher I hated the summer – the humidity, the sweating, the flip flops. I don’t know how much longer I’ll be teaching, as I’m in the middle of a career crisis (after three years), but every so often I’m surprised by the things that come out of the mouths of my current students. I’m not talking about the cursing, or the grammatical snafus, but of the odd, out-of-left-field stuff that plops itself on my desk every so often.

Take yesterday. I had just assigned my sixth graders an autobiographical poem — ten lines, and I pretty much tell them what to write on each line. Line four was to be “Three things I don’t like.” Francisco came up to my table and asked if he could write that he didn’t like the Romans.

“What do you have against the Romans?”

“Well,” he replied, “They stole all the Greek’s gods because they couldn’t come up with any of their own.”

Fair enough. But wait for it…wait for it…

“And they tortured Jesus.”

There it is.

I have another student who apparently was “almost arrested” the other day. I asked him why.

“I don’t know, miss. I wasn’t doing anything.”

“Well, you must have been doing something.”

“No, I was just sitting there.”


“In front of the One Stop.”

“DeShaun, that’s a liquor store. What were you doing there?”

“I was with some people..the cop thought they were…”

“You need to stop hanging out with these people.”

“No, miss. Can’t. One of them has the new Xbox.”

Glad to see priorities are in order.

I’ve also been asked if I thought Obama was the antichrist, and if I was worried about North Korea. (P.S. No, and yes but there’s really nothing I can do about it now.)

At the other end of the spectrum, I had two boys in my class last quarter who thought that, “Guess what? Chicken butt!” was the height of hilarity. So it’s all kind of a mixed bag.

On the plus side, some of my students were impressed when I told them that I wrote a book, despite the fact that there aren’t any zombies in it.

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