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New Student

I got a new student today.  He came in bold as brass.  No shyness at all.  Asked to sit with the worst behaved kids.  I sat him right square in front of the class.

I overheard him talking to Joe.  “We could do anything at my old school.  They’d send us to the office, call our parents.  Big deal.  My parents don’t care.”

Joe’s eyes were huge.  “They’ll care about our principal.  If Ms. A. doesn’t kill you first.  She’s nice, but just don’t try that stuff here, okay?”

“New Kid: “Why?  What’s she gonna do to me?”

Joe: “I don’t know, but I don’t want to watch!”

New Kid, quiet.  Staring at me.

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. Good luck with him, Quilly. I hope he listens to Joe’s advice. It could very well be nothing more than a lot of talk, too. I suppose sometimes the new kids have to find a way to get noticed, huh?

  2. Oh this is good! You don’t even have to make the effort to keep this kid in line because your reputation has done the work for you! Excellent!

  3. oh sweet, i hope he is not a handful. maybe it’s all an act for he is knew and secretly nervous..either way, you will handle it as you handle others but still, more work for you…and how sad, if it’s true that his parents don’t really care..

    (if i was in the front or back row, i be staring at you too, you are kinda hot woman..although, i’m hoping that those little ones don’t see things like that yet ;p)

  4. Rob — new kids almost always come in one of two ways — quiet and timid, or loud and pushy. They seldom stay that way. Believe it or not, the loud pushy ones are usually easier to reach — they give one material to work with.

    Donna — I was very gentle with the boy — I am handing him plenty of rope. Let’s see if he makes it work for him, or uses it to hang himself.

    Mumma — one would hope, but my rep is really just hype. The worst thing I have ever done to a child is stand still and stare at him until he melted himself into a puddle.

    Chana — I am in “wait and see mode.” So far, I have formed to concrete opinion of the child. I suspect that he was exaggerating — and bragging — yesterday, building his own rep.

    Doug — the only killing I’ve been tempted to do lately was to a mangy ol’ Dawg.

  5. Ohhhhhhh boy! So watchya gonna DO to him Quilly? I know you’re gonna whoop him into shape! LOL! I feel a LOT of classroom adventure coming on….

  6. Be afraid, Dawg, be very afraid.

    The worst thing I have ever done to a child is stand still and stare at him until he melted himself into a puddle. I’ve been in that icebox. Death is kinder. Especially because you’re watching (not to mention everybody else), and s/he knows it.

    I suspect you never let the troublemakers sit together. Safety in numbers.

    I reckon if the New Kid was really that much of a gang leader, he would have come with a dossier. I expect a challenge soon, he’ll learn that he’s not in Kansas any more, Toto, and you’ll all go forward.

  7. OC — you do realize that stare only works on someone with a guilty conscience? The reason I don’t have to yell or scold is because s/he has heard it all before and it’s replaying in her/his head.

    Also, my classroom is only yea big. Sometimes I just can’t get the troublemakers far enough apart. In such instances, I sit them all together, close to me, and let them torture one another and leave the rest of us to learn. I also give group behavior rewards — which they never earn — so usually they start to catch on and settle down.

    Finally, if Jim came with a dossier, I wouldn’t know, because I try very hard not to look at a child’s paperwork until after I have formed my own opinion. Everybody comes to my room with a clean slate and a new beginning.

  8. Hi Quilly

    I agree with Dr John, you have a good class that like you and they will beat the Per-Jeebers out of the new kid if he trys to be smart.

    A wonderful weekend is wished for you.

    Yes ( there is such a word as Per-Jeebers) it comes out of the Maritimes.

  9. Bill — the word perjeebers is not new to me. Been using it since I was a kid. I think my current class of students would show their displeasure with the new kid by telling him off. These kids aren’t physical, like my last year’s students. They would also refuse to cooperate with him, and pretty much leave him feeling like a pariah.

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