Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Middle School is not for me!

Let me preface, by stating, that I love kindergarten! There are so many things to like about teaching this particular grade. Kindergartners are not knowing of everything, they rarely give you an attitude and if they do, they easily can be set straight. Kindergartners are lovable, give great compliments (Mrs. Broeker, you look nice today) and generally think I am one of the coolest adults they know. Really....where could I go wrong hanging out with this kind of crowd? I will admit that they can also be a little egocentric, but for the large part they are genuine and manageable on most given days.

Now middle school, that's a totally different story in my book...

Middle Schoolers are not as cute as kindergartners in their thoughts or actions. They also have raging hormones and an apparent need to impress their peers without any thought to others' feelings.

This attitude of mine is the number one reason why I would not/could not make a good middle school teacher. I don't have the patience or tolerance for any kind of adolescent behavior. Really, how do middle school teachers do it? I've pondered this more than once.

This brings me to my own middle schooler, Tyler. Tyler is that lucky, oldest child who gets the joy of breaking in two parents who would rather had him stay in 5th grade forever. Two parents who want him to work out his own problems without interference by overprotective parents. My sincere goal as a parent is to be an active listener as well as a constructive advisor all while trying to empower my teenager to be the best he can be. Tyler has one parent (me) who often thinks that skipping middle school all-together might be the easiest thing for all parties. I still recall quite well the horrors of my own junior high years (that was the terminology then). Oh, to have to relive it through your child is almost too much to tolerate on certain today.

Today Tyler informed me of his need to wear a rubber band around his wrist to "ward off any dude who's armed with a rubber band". This helps protect one's self from other "band" users who might consider snapping you with one or flinging a "taco" your way.


(Photo of a taco: no meat, lettuce or cheese, just a burning sting without the hot sauce.)

Or when *Aaron kicked him again in Language Arts for the umpteenth time and Tyler chose to get up and move to another table without any confrontation on Tyler's part.

Bravo, I did teach him something right!

Or how Tyler got attacked by a child named *Eric a few weeks ago, which I chose not to blog about since the child does have a disability and because I'm willing to admit that my child is far from perfect too. However, sometimes I wonder where our system has gone wrong when I hear things like this said...

Tyler: "Mom, guess what *Eric told me today?"

Me: "I have no idea. Maybe sorry?"

Tyler: "Nope. *Eric said, thanks for fighting with me, Tyler. I have a behavior plan now and I get rewards when I have a good day. He said it with a smile on his face, Mom."

Me: "Really?!"

(deep breath)

I will get through this.

I will navigate Tyler and two more children through these same adolescent rough waters. And I will go back to work tomorrow because kindergarten is definitely the place for me!

*Names changed to protect the guilty.


Mamma has spoken said...

Oh I so agree! Elementary was great, Middle school was a nightmare, and then everything was great when they went to high school. So hang in there, high school is around the corner and it does get better, A LOT better. Don't know why, but that's how it's been here with all four sons. Wanted to send them away for those three years of middle school and not let them come back until they were ready for high school....

Mindee said...

I don't know Amy. I think of all the grades to teach in elementary, that kindergarten is far and away the hardest. You should get paid extra!