If you had to give a grade for your behavior and your effort in class yesterday with the sub, what would it be and why?
That was the last question I posed to my students on the pop quiz that followed their day with a substitute. A day that resulted in 3 pages (yes, she bothered to write three pages) in red pen detailing the debauchery of my darlings.
I expected a lot of ambitious grades. I figured I’d get a good mix of “I deserve an A or B all around” with perhaps a few “C’s” thrown in just because some of them may have felt guilty for the apparent ridiculousness that was my day away.
Woah Nelly was I wrong! These kids were brutally honest. Many of them gave themselves an F for effort but a B for behavior, with the rational being that even though they did NOTHING, they didn’t bother anyone very much while they were avoiding all things academic. Some, however, really owned up to their own mess and gave themselves an F for both categories. I was more than a little surprised at their candor.
Another unexpected bit of fascination was the extensive amount of specificity in terms of their confessions.
“I will give myself a F for my behavior because I was bad because Loudmouth was asking and telling to give him my worksheet but then when I gave it to him the teacher was coming over so I told Loudmouth to give it back and he said no so the teacher told him ‘Give it back to her!’ and when the teacher left Loudmouth said ‘I will give you a dollar if you let me copy your worksheet’ and I said ok but then the teacher came back and Loudmouth gave me back my paper and I left and he screamed at me and I screamed back that I was keeping his money anyways and everyone started laughing and then Sweet Girl was saying that what I did was slime and I think it was a little and I am very sorry for my bad behavior. ”
Way to lay it all out there kiddo.
Clearly I need to have another lesson about the glory of punctuation.