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I’m Mean, & I Tattle, Too.

I have 20 kids in my reading class. Everyday I try to read one-on-one with 4 or 5 of them. While I am listening to their peers read, the remainder of the class has assignments to complete. They should be busy and productive, but it doesn’t always happen. There was a considerable amount of off task behavior in one of my reading quartets today. After a while I grew tired of reprimanding them.

Me: Okay, gentlemen, since you’ve had recess all thorugh reading class, you can come back and finish your work at lunch time.

Rico: Yes, Miss.

Vincent: Yes, Miss.

Richard: Yes, Miss.

Kurt: I don’t want to.

Me: Tough.

Kurt: Give me another chance.

Me: You’ve already had six.

Kurt: But I want recess.

Me: You just had it.

Kurt: I’m not coming.

Me [shrugging]: I can’t make you, but what are you going to say to Mr. F. when he asks why you didn’t show up?”

Kurt [bugged eyed]: Who’s telling him?

Me: Me.

Kurt [slumping in his seat and mumbling]: Tattler.

Me: Did you say something?

Kurt [sitting up straight and smiling]: I want to apologize for playing in class.

Me: Thank you, I appreciate that.

Kurt: Can I go to recess?

Me: Nice try.

Kurt [slumped in his chair and mumbling again]: Mean tattler.

Quilly is the pseudonym of Charlene L. Amsden, who lives on The Big Island in Hawaii. When she is not hanging out with Amoeba, she is likely teaching or sewing. Or she could be cooking, taking photographs, or even writing. But if she's not doing any of that, she's probably on Facebook or tinkering with her blog.


  1. This sounds so much like my house! Every time i leave the room of a disappointed child i hear such mumbles…different words, but same angry mumbles.

  2. HA!!! I would LOVE to work in your class with you. You are just my kind of teacher, and I totally agree that sarcasm is a requirement for effective teaching.
    I have worked in special education for 20 years in various capacities. My latest incarnation after coming out of retirement being a 1:1 aide for a mainstreaming autistic boy. No one gets me…. in five years of ‘graduating’ from one grade to another only one teacher got my sense of humor and teaching technique.
    And yes, younger children definitely don’t get me, but my teenaged son’s friends really like me- sarcasm being a staple to every good teenager’s repertoire.
    Keep it up I haven’t had a belly laugh like this in a while :)) I will be visiting regularly. BTW, should you read my blog, Jane was a teacher, and the one teacher who got me.

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