Thursday, April 23, 2009

"Leave, office, now!"

I wrote my first referral today that I have had to write in quite a while. I kicked the student out of class, and also suspended him from my class for tomorrow as well. I'm sure you are wondering what the student did to incur my wrath; allow me to share it with you.

First, I must anonymously introduce you to... oh heck, I could think up some fake name, but I won't. Let's just call him "Missing Filter," as in he is missing a filter between his brain and his mouth, which means he often just blurts out any little old thought that somehow manages to form in that thick skull of his. Of course, "Missing Filter" is a bit long of a name to keep typing over and over, so let's just call him MF for short. Now, MF's ancestry is half-black, but before your knee starts jerking and you begin asking me what that has to do with anything, just bear with me. It makes his moronic utterances that much more astounding.

My 8th graders are currently learning about the major events leading up to the Civil War. On Monday and Tuesday, they learned about the world of slavery in the South. Yesterday, they learned about the three compromises: the Missouri Compromise of 1820, the Compromise of 1850, and the Kansas-Nebraska Act of 1854. Today, we discussed the other major landmark events of the 1850s that made the Civil War inevitable, such as "Bleeding Kansas", John Brown's raid on Harpers Ferry, the formation of the Republican Party and Lincoln's run for the senate and then the presidency, Brooks beating down Sumner, and of course, the Dred Scott decision of 1857. It was this last item that led to one of the most incredibly stupid displays of behavior that I have seen in my six years of teaching.

When I do lectures, I always accompany the displayed notes on the overhead screen with a Power Point presentation that I run from my computer monitor to my television. The Power Point never has any text, just images. When we got to the Dred Scott case in the notes, I brought up an image of a famous portrait of the famous slave, Dred Scott. In fact, here it is:

As soon as the image appeared on the TV screen, I heard and watched MF make a monkey sound: Ooooh, Ooooh, Ooooh, Ahhh, Ahhh, Ahhh. I was speechless. All I could do was look at MF with a countenance that was one part incredulity and another part pure shock, along with my palms outstretched away from my sides and turned upward. "What?" MF sarcastically responded, "He looks like a monkey."

My body language continued in its frozen position, except my eyes grew much wider, and one of my outstretched palms turned into a fist with a pointed index finger that showed the way to the classroom door, and in my anger, I was only able to muster three words: "Leave, office, now!" MF gathered his things, and off he went to the office. When he was gone, there was an uncomfortable silence in the classroom, as many of the students were as shocked as I was at what MF had just said. The funny thing, is we all just kind of gave a half-chuckle and then moved on with the lesson. We were all so used to MF saying such inappropriate things, that we chose not to dwell on it.

Just another day in the classroom.

Good Day to You, Sir


Anonymous said...

MF is utterly clueless and ignorant. What is he thinking?

Darren said...

How long did it take you to come up with "missing filter"? :-)

Chanman said...

The secret is to come up with the acronym first, and then find the words to fit!

The Vegas Art Guy said...

What a jackass. Maybe you should just call him donkey from now on.

Mrs. Bluebird said...

Makes me want to beat my head against the wall. What a complete jackass.