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Tuesday, May 05, 2015

She Got My Number...



It's the end of the day in this 4th grade class. Half the class left when the bell rang and the most of other half drifted out while I was finishing my notes and status report.  I'm almost ready to lock the doors and shoo the lingerers out but one girl is tearing her desk and backpack apart looking for something. Her friend is trying to help without success.

She can't find her cell phone.

 Now, why a 4th grader NEEDS a cell phone isn't the issue. That's a topic for maybe future discussions, but this girl evidently has one and is freaking out that "someone has stolen her phone" because it's not in her backpack. Mom is "going to kill her".  I got the impression that this might not be the first time she has had her phone go missing.

I suggested that we should go the office and report it missing if she can't find it but she's so worried what Mom is gonna do when she finds out, she starts crying and refuses to leave without it.

Her friend suggests that I could call the number and maybe they could hear it ring.

Not a bad idea. Without thinking, I get my phone and call the number she gives me. A muffled hum indicates the phone is located in an unsearched pocket of her backpack.
 Problem solved. 

It is at home and after I relate how my day went that Claudette informs me:
You DO know that she now has YOUR phone number on HER phone, right? 

I must be an idiot to not realize what the implications are. How is it going to look if a parent finds an unknown number belonging to a substitute teacher on their 4th graders phone?

I immediately emailed the teacher and let her know what and how it happened. She reassured me that she would talk with the student tomorrow and correct my stupid lack of judgment.

5/7 Update: 
I was back at the same school today and decided on a followup visit with the teacher. She did follow through and the student allowed her to look through the call history on her phone. The teacher located my number deleted it. She also looked through her contacts list and FOUND it again labled "Mr. Homework"! (also deleted.)

Now I'm just hoping this kid isn't into sharing numbers with other classmates. If so, this could easily comeback to bite me in the a-- big time.
 

3 comments:

wheretheweebairnsare said...

Wow! I probably would've done the same - great lesson for all teachers/student teachers...

Eduardo Cerda said...

Hi, I’m Eduardo. I’m a pre-service teacher majoring in Spanish Ed. I was just curious as to whether you had any other dilemma similar to the one about the student getting your phone number and whether I should look out for something like that in the classroom.

KauaiMark said...

Eduardo,
It's not wise to have any students number or to allow them to have yours. News stories about "substitute teachers" are generally the ones you don't want to the subject of and all it takes is an accusation or mistaken comment by a student to end a career.

see: http://kauaimark.blogspot.com/2013/05/accused.html