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Monday, January 24, 2005

3rd Grade “Community”…

This assignment was for a “community” (teachers description) of two third grade classes (50 kids). It is team taught by two teachers. I was subbing for one of them. Pretty easy assignment as I let the other teacher dictate what she wanted me to handle.

My first assignment was the “low readers”. I had about 10 kids of which Aarron was one. I initially thought Aarron was just a class clown by the way he seemed determined to disrupt the group trying to get laughs. Then things got ugly when I attempted to get him to cooperate and get into the swing of the lesson.

Next thing I know, he’s on the ground under his desk bouncing the desk on his feet saying “I don’t care, you can’t do anything to me”

The kid’s right. I can’t physically get him to do anything except let my team member in on what happening. The next think I know, the principal arrived and hauled him out of class to be sent home. The teacher said this is normal for Aarron. He has family and emotional “issues”.

The class ends with a weekly class meeting where all the 3rd grade “community” gets together to hear about “praises” and “issues”. The kids start by complimenting each other about how they are grateful to others for “being nice”, “playing together”, “and being helpful”, etc.

They then gravitate to the “issues” side where they address complaints generated during the previous week. If a kid can remember a slight during the previous week, the issue gets resolved by the following formulated conflict resolution script:

Victim: “(BadGuy’s name), are you ready to hear my issue?”

BadGuy: “(Victim’s name), I’m ready to hear your issue”

Victim: “I feel mad when you (offending action) at (offending action location)”

BadGuy: “I hear you when you said I made you mad when I (offending action) at (offending action location)”

After about a couple dozen of these exchanges I wonder just what this accomplishes. I can see it now 30 years in the future.

U.N.: “Terrorist, are you ready to hear my issue?”

Terrorist: “HA, HA, HA!!! SPEAK UNBELIEVER!”

U.N.: “I feel mad when you blow up innocent people all over the world”

Terrorist: “HA, HA, HA!!!, I hear you stooge of the Great Satan. DIE! DIE! DIE! ”

Just wondering…..

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