Tuesday, March 23, 2010


For the past week I've been teaching at a school. Its actually kind of awesome, there are some kids whose parents have to work during Spring Break, so they bring us in to give the kids something fun to do during the break. I really like it, and the kids (on a whole) are fairly awesome. Some of them remembered me from last year which is impressive because I meet people and six hours later have no idea who they are. And they're all about hugs. And who doesn't love hugs?

Anyway - they are a rowdy group, which is to be expected. They're 1st-4th graders, they come from rough home lives (some of them) and they're on Spring Break which is when they're supposed to be getting the nutty out. So normally I chalk up their insanity to you know, being kids. But there is one thing that drives me completely bonkers.

They have some SERIOUS issues with lines. Primarily the whole standing in them and the proper etiquette that surrounds that. We work with 60 kids most days, divided into 6 groups of 10. So at least six times a day (if not more)- I hear, "He Cutted!!" or some variation therein. For some reason, this bugs me far more than anything else they do including stuff that might get them super hurt or super hurts me.

I have developed my own way of dealing with it, which is to say that the "line" they are in doesn't matter - I am going to call on the person who looks like most interested in participating and is being the most respectful. This works for the most part, but they still find ways to get REAL.EMOTIONAL about the order in which they get to do skills (this is also so bizarre to me, because they all are going to get to go the exact same number of times no matter what and if it were me, I'd want to go last so I could make sure that I did better than everyone else...but I am pretty neurotic for a seven year-old.

Anyway, today I was thinking about this and how totally ridiculous it is but then I got to thinking about me, right now, and how I would lose my ever Pat Benatar loving mind if someone cut in line. Not so much for fun things, but like the bank. Oh man, if someone cut at the bank, I'd lose it. Not out loud, probably, but under my breath and for sure in a text message to someone. Its weird how focused we are on lines, and how I am probably jacking these kids up for life by rocking their world with this whole, "there is no line" thing. Because lines are an essential part of our culture - and not just dbag Americans, but people stand in line all over the word.

In retrospect, I should have just taught them all a valuable lesson about how cutting in line is wrong and its going to get you a lot of dirty looks when you get older...but instead I just make my own life a lot easier on a day to day basis. Which is probably a much more valuable lesson about the future.

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She's pint-sized and amazing.