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Ball Three Ball Three is offline
 
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Ball Three
 
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"Mutant Ears??"
Old 10-24-2009, 10:34 AM
 
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Late last spring I subbed in a WILD 6th grade class. After immediately having the
office come and get the ringleaders (who had given me fake names, so I didn't trust
them to go on their own,) I began a pompous little speech to the rest of the class.
I intended to point out that they were acting more like sheep or lemmings than the
bold insurrectionists they probably thought they were.

"How do you guys think of yourselves?" I asked. "As iconoclasts? Rebels? Freedom
fighters? Mutineers?" A tough little girl in the front row looked at me indignantly.
"What do mutant ears have to do with anything??" she asked.

So much for the speech.


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Kataqueens Kataqueens is offline
 
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???
Old 10-24-2009, 11:01 AM
 
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A sixth grader would have no idea what most of those words meant. I'm guessing the students didn't settle down once the ringleaders left the room. What did do you after the speech?

I had a similar 6th grade class last week, and I invited the dean to speak to the students, threatening them with detention if "your teacher notifies me of anything after I leave." That seemed to do the trick.
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Ball Three Ball Three is offline
 
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Hi, Kataqueens,
Old 10-24-2009, 12:36 PM
 
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As I was told later, this class was infamous throughout the administration because
owing to their teacher's ongoing ill health they had had a succession of subs all
year and a barely-functioning teacher the rest of the time. Consequently the
principal herself came to scoop up the ringleaders, and she told the kids about
what your dean told yours, and it worked okay.

So my little speech was intended not to quiet the class, but to get them to think
about whether blindly following their peers was always a good idea. I did indeed
realize they wouldn't know what "iconoclasts" meant, but I hoped they would
understand "rebels," and maybe "freedom fighters" and "mutineers," and infer the
meaning of any unfamiliar words from the context. As it turned out, however, I
never delivered the speech because I was laughing too hard after the girl asked
about "mutant ears." So I backtracked and defined the unfamiliar words.

For example, I explained that "mutineers" were just like "pirates," except that
instead of taking over another ship they took over their own. They understood
that perfectly. They knew all about pirates.

Last edited by Ball Three; 10-24-2009 at 12:50 PM..
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