Today I covered 8th grade science. The teacher has been out all week (his son's been sick). Today ended up being a finish-yesterday's-assignment day (I guess yesterday's sub made a mess of things...).
I explained what needed to get done to each class. Then I sat back and waited for where my presence was needed. In 3rd period, I didn't have to go far.
A boy and a girl sat at the table right next to the teacher's table. Everything started innocuously enough. The girl hid the boy's reading book. When the boy didn't notice its absence, the girl pointed out that he was missing something.
8th grade science is physical science. The class was doing work related to the periodic table. The boy and girl were on task. The girl had some questions.
I showed the girl where she could find what state each element was in (at room temperature) on the periodic table. She then checked for each element on the assignment. The boy made fun of her for double checking.
Chlorine? The boy knew that was liquid. He was wrong: gas. The girl then went after the boy for being wrong. Actually, she went after him for being wrong about everything. (For the record, he wasn't. He was wrong about half the time. She was wrong the other half.)
There was bickering over why she needed a new saxophone. The boy was shocked that the girl wasn't sure that copper was a metal (she was double checking, she said). And on it went.
I asked them if they bickered like that every day. I wouldn't think a teacher would put two people next to each other who irritated each other so much.
(I considered telling them to date and get it over with, but that only leads to vehement denials. I know this. From experience.)
It was kind of entertaining to watch. Does that make me a bad person?