Tuesday, September 14, 2010

It Only Takes One

"You were the sub for Mr. O. when that boy pushed me into a window and we broke it."

I've run into Kayla in various classes for the past couple years (since she was in middle school, and she's a junior or senior now).  Kayla is memorable for being one of those students who don't know how to chill out.  She's a constant source of loud.

I've had fights in class.  I've had students break the teacher's chair.  I've had earthquakes.  I even had a student pass out.  I think I would have remembered her breaking a window on my watch.

I told Kayla that it wasn't me.  She didn't believe me.  Then she did.  She realized that it was someone else, but it was me that had written her up for an argument with another boy.

I did not remember this incident either, but it sounded a lot more reasonable.  I decided not to argue the point.  Kayla is one of those people who is always right.  And you can't tell her otherwise.

Yesterday she was a lot more mellow.  She started off her usual self, but then she got to work.  I was happy not to have to argue with her.  But today she decided that the class (algebra 2) was too hard, and she wasn't going to do it.  She was going to transfer out.

Rather than do battle (because it would have been a battle), I allowed her to go to another class to get an assignment that wasn't "too hard" for her.  (The instructional assistant and I tried to convince Kayla that it would be good for her to try something that's a little difficult.  She wasn't having any of it.)  Upon her return, she sort of started the work, but mostly she talked as loudly as she could to the other student who I had been warned about in the lesson plans.

If I hadn't been busy helping other students (the students actually doing the assignment), I would have attempted to calm her earlier.  Fourth period, which had been so wonderfully good yesterday, behaved just as a class with a sub usually behaves.  Not well.

Kayla announced that it was time to clean up, only it wasn't.  We had ten minutes left of class.  Yesterday she attempted this, but it wasn't a big deal as that was when the fire drill occurred.  Today, half the class believed her.  (They only need five minutes.)

Note to self: get in Kayla's face tomorrow and get her settled fast.

It's amazing how one student can rile up a whole class.

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