Thursday, April 29, 2010

The Bribe

For some reason, it's always $1.

Yesterday after the testing finished, I covered an 8th grade math class.  Since they had been testing all morning, and since the classes were each 25 minutes long, the assignment was a set of reflection questions about the math test they had just taken.  Simple enough.

4th period finished up their questions as quickly as the other groups had.  Then they were allowed to sit and talk until the end of the period (these were even the instructions in the lesson plan).  But 4th period got bored.  One student asked if he could take out his cell phone.

First I said no.  Then I amended my no--he could take out his cell phone if he wanted me to confiscate it.

The boy had an offer for me.  He said that if each student in class paid me $1, then could they all take out their cell phones?  He told me I'd make $40 on the deal.

I looked around the classroom.  "40 dollars?" I asked.  "There are 40 students in class?"

He amended his estimate.  I could make $30.

Again, I questioned his estimate.  I had a roll list.  Earlier I noticed how many students were in the class.  20.  And all were present.

Finally, he got up and counted heads.  Then he changed the bribe offer to $2 per student.

I thought learning to count was covered in the lower grades somewhere.  And presumably he had been with this class all year.  Now he's figuring out that he's in a class of 20?

I again turned down his offer.  The period ended soon after, and I did not see a single cell phone.

But it's always $1.  The bribe the kids offer is always $1.

1 comment:

  1. Too funny. I fear for these children's futures. And what exactly would they be willing to do for $1?


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