In my class yesterday, I taught a lesson reviewing nouns, adjectives, and verbs before we start adverbs later this week. My students are slowly starting to understand it because we’ve been reviewing the differences for about three weeks now. I figure that in order to get any of the new vocabulary to stick in their heads, they have to know how to use the words. Most of these 14-16 year olds had it all mixed up a few weeks ago.
So I start by asking the class to think of any noun to use for the example and one of them yells out “Chuck E. Cheese!”. Great – I’m thinking that brainstorming a list of adjectives to describe him will be easy.
I write “CHUCKY CHEESE” on the board and ask them to think of words they can use to describe the creepy mouse. Most classes would have just said, “smiley! black and white!, or fun!”. But that would have been way too simple.
No joke, four of the students in the class start having a heated debate about the proper spelling of Chuck E. Cheese. The most unstable of the bunch is out of her seat, flailing her arms, screaming at the others, and swearing to god that the correct spelling is “CHUCK E. CHEESE”.
One thing that I have learned in these situations has been some major patience. If I had to choose one thing that I’ve learned so far teaching, it’s got to be patience. Yelling back at them and getting mad rarely works (and just gives me a bigger headache). Also, this had to have been one of the dumbest arguments in the history of the world. I put my hands in the air, erased the CHUCKY CHEESE I had written and just wrote Mickey Mouse. They all got back on track and we correctly added some adjectives. For the record, the most animated student was right, the correct spelling is Chuck E. Cheese. When I told her later that day she said, “You know damn right Mr. K, don’t front like I’m not right about Chuck E.”
The worst/funniest part is that a very similar argument ensued on the very next example. I wrote a sentence using another student-suggested noun: Nicki Minaj. The crazy one was so positive that it was spelled “Nicki Manaj”, but for that one, I had to shut her down. She’s on my iPod and I was pretty confident on my spelling.
There are like a hundred random, crazy things that happen daily. This one was just on my mind. The other ridiculous thing that occurred yesterday was a recurring ‘incident’ that also happened a few times last year. It definitely deserves its own post and once again, it’s about me getting harassed by 9th graders. Post to come later in the week.
That’s it for now – I really should be planning lessons or getting some late grad school assignments finished. Instead I’m here typing this and watching the Lakers – Rockets game which I have no interest in.