Friday, September 12, 2008

Kids say the darndest things

I received my student teaching placement this week. And officially started student teaching two days ago. I was placed with a 2nd grade class in an innercity school district, where majority of the students are African American ( I want to say about 95%) and probably have not interacted with a Muslim female who practices hijab. How do I know this? Well they couldn't stop staring at my head and whispering to each other, "What's that thing on her head?"

When I was told that I would be placed later on in the semester I was kinda worried that the teacher I was placed with would hate me. But it turns out that the teacher I'm with absolutely lovesssssss having me around.Alhamdullilah. And boy am I grateful! Ms. D is the teacher that I'm working with. Once we were introduced, she informed me that I would introduce myself to the students once the students settled in their seats. Of course, I heard whispers coming from the students asking each other, "Who's that?" and staring at me. And not so discreetly, I might add. So once they did get settled and finished some of their morning work, Ms. D told me to introduce myself. I didn't know what to say really. I mean what do you say to a bunch of second graders about yourself, that they might actually care about or be interested in. So I basically told them "I'm Ms. Attitude and you're teacher will be teaching me, while I'm teaching you all. I attend X University and am excited to work with you during this amazing semester with the hopes of actually becoming a teacher after I graduate." Then I asked them if anyone had any questions that they might like to ask me. And of course all hands shot up in the air. (They just didn't want to get back to their morning classwork) Uhhh, where do I start? Ahh yes, you right there that's waving your hand and saying "Oooh oooh, pick me, pick me."

"Did you drop him off to school today?" pointing at the other non African American in the room.
-Uhhh, no I dont know him. We're not related.
"Are you sure?"

Next question please.

"Are you from India?"
Pffftttttttttt. Of course not. What a dumb question. Jay kay. I didnt really say that. But I should have. I did explain to them that my parents were from a country near India called Bangladesh. I then asked if any of them had heard of that country. At which point all of them nodded their heads. I didnt believe them.Some adults have no idea what Bangladesh is, let alone know that it is a country.How would a bunch of second graders know what Bangladesh was? However it turns out I was wrong and they did know because the boy that I supposedly dropped off to school turned out to be from Bangladesh. What a coincidence.

"Why do you wear that thing on your head?"
-Ahh the anticipated question. The reason I asked them if they had any questions. I knew they were curious about it. They kept staring at my head since they walked into the classroom. I didn't go into depth whilst answering that question. Didn't want to confuse them anymore then they needed to be. Instead I just answered with a simple, "It's a part of my religion and obligation that women cover their hair."

"What's under there?"
Didn't I just answer that question? What the heck do you think is under there? Magic? Candy? The secrets to 2nd grade?

Little Boy:So you go to X University?
Little Boy: *starts listing random facts about X University.*
-*awkward silence*
Uhhhh That is very interesting, thank you for sharing all of that oh so useful information with us. What would we have done without it?

My favorite question of the day:
A little girl who looked really concerned about my commute to and from her school: "Ms. Attititude, do you have to take a plane home?"
What a silly question my dear! Of course I don't take a plane home ,I take a camel.

Later on in the day during a Math lesson the students were asked who the president of the United States was at the present time. They all shouted "Obama". That being said, we all know who they would vote for if they were old enough. It was too funny. And when two girls said that they liked John McCain and were hoping he would win the upcoming elections, the entire class turned on them. Even Ms D. gave them a funny look.

I can tell this is going to be one funny and *hopefully* fun student teaching experience. And also a fast one too.


Artistic Logic said...

ok so i was trying to copy n paste one of your sentences here but its not working with the new layout.... so nyways the part where u introduced yourself, the first sentence... thats TOTALLY you lol
and I can't believe half the things you wrote (their questions) ....
veryyyyyyy funny
thank god my first day of work wasn't like that... can you imagine??? (although I have a feeling the same thoughts are in the minds of my coworkers too lol)

Falling Up said...

ROFL. I loved this post! And I don't know why it won't allow the highlight feature. I'm working on it! Ad obviously kids aren't going to be discreet. They're kids!
The girl who thought you have to take a plane everyday sounds so cute. :D

I hope it doesn't go too fast. I want to hear more stories. :)

Anonymous said...

I loved this post! It was so funny. The kids questions are so weird& funny too.

......Love said...

Got my assignment this week too :)