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Posts from the ‘Chalkboard Stories’ Category

Oscar, Who Hated Me

Oscar is the one who killed Spencer.  I’m sure of it.

Poor Oscar.  He loaaathed me.  I don’t think he walked into the classroom hating me.  It was something that developed over time, though I can’t recall any precipitating incident.  But after a few months, I knew Oscar’s goal in life was to teach me a lesson.

He actually submitted this as his response when I asked the kids to write their goals, except instead of “you” he wrote something like, “teachers who don’t know what they’re talking about,” his normally childish scrawl even more jerky on this assignment.  I assume he was shaking with rage as he wrote it.

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In class, Oscar was forever trying to catch me in a mistake, trip me up, or ask me something he hoped I didn’t know the answer to.  During a parent-teacher conference, his mother said that he spent hours at night reading Wikipedia pages.  She was trying to illustrate his inquisitiveness and bright mind, but after that point, each time he raised his hand, I imagined him furiously clicking away the night before, searching for some arcane fact that would secure my downfall. Read more



He’s Dead, He’s Not Dead, He’s Dead – Part Two

My desk was at the right front of the room, by the chalkboard, so Spencer lived on his own desk in the back left, next to the coat closet.

I did this because when the novelty of taking care of a hamster wore off (as I knew it would) and the kids stopped cleaning his cage regularly, it started to smell back there.  I didn’t care, though, since I couldn’t smell it.  For a while, I sat the kids who annoyed me the most next to Spencer’s desk – my teacher’s revenge on the ones who asked obnoxious questions to amuse the class (and me sometimes, too – I admit it) or constantly left in the middle of lessons to go to the bathroom or threw spitballs at the next table over and thought I didn’t see it.

That year, my last year as a teacher, I loved my middle school students.  They were quirky and fun, many of them were super-smart, and my 7th graders were a big, heartwarming surprise: they were so nice to each other.
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Voices from Above

Voices from Above
He’s Dead, He’s Not Dead, He’s Dead – Part One

In my last year of teaching, we had a new principal who loved to make announcements on the public address system. While our old principal limited her interruptions to break times, except for the most urgent of announcements, we were surprised, in the new year, to hear in the middle of class a short throat-clearing cough and

“This is the principal speaking  Recess will be outside today.”
“If anyone needs to order milk, please come to the front office.”

Soon my middle school kids were openly rolling their eyes whenever they heard the PA crackle on.  About halfway through the year, I stopped pretending to admonish them.

The following is a sad story.
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