Tuesday, October 18, 2005

An Attitude Adjustment

Today a parent informed me that I have an attitude. His exact words actually were, "If you have an attitude, the kids will have an attitude, too. I never get an attitude with them, and I never have any problems. I could do your job easy."

Before speaking with this parent, I would have argued that I didn't have any attitude problems, but now I just might. I have many thoughts of exactly what I could have responded with, but I am not dumb enough to post them in a public forum. What I will say, is that you shouldn't talk about what you don't know about. I am a teacher because I absolutely love kids...until 2:30. I can't imagine what it must be like to be a parent, round the clock, for the rest of my life. I have much respect for anyone who chooses to do it. And I'm very careful about what I say, or even allow myself to think, about the parents of my students.

After a comment like this parent's, though, I'd like to say, "You think you could do my job easy, how about Thursday. You can come in, and you can try to teach 12 of them how to read, how to use exponents in math, and how to write a memoir. That's what is on my pacing schedule for this week. Here's the teacher's guide, here's the class schedule, here's the IEPs with suggested modifications. Good luck." But I don't say that. I try to explain, but realize that it is hopeless and a waste of time in this particular situation. (I imagine this parent is one of those people who wouldn't have a problem for the entire day because the kids would play Seven-Up for math, do a word search for literacy, and have no homework.)

Fortunately, before I fully devolved into a bitter NYC teacher, I got to spend a little time with two of my favorite fellow teachers tonight, working on a group project for class. It's amazing that we completed our work (and did an awesome job, I might add) while Chris entertained us with a dance routine from many years ago to "Funky Town," my roommate ate a record number of garlic knots (so outside of her normal food groups,) and I somehow insighted about five death threats from Chris, the scariest of which was "Did you order six garlic knots? I'm going to kill you. Oh, five? Five, okay." These two are some of the only people who can make me find the humor in my new attitude problem.

1 comment:

Me said...

i just recovered from the garlic knot fiasco.

we did have fun and i think chris needs to take us to funky town standing up the next time. it's a shame we don't have talent contests anymore.