I finished my last day at my first real teaching job just a few weeks ago, and my life is now full of applications and interviews for jobs in this new town. And I'm nervous. I kind of stink at interviewing, because I can't think on my feet and my body turns red and I sweat a lot... enough that when they ask me to give 5 words that describe me, I tell them "sweaty." Oh geez.
But let's not forget the little sweeties that I taught not too long ago, and their funny and naive little sayings. I mostly teach students who do not speak English as their first language, so naturally our conversations revolve around confusion over a word or phrase in English. But sometimes it goes deeper than that, to reveal a part of their past that makes me shift in my seat and bury my eyebrows because-- truly-- these kids have seen some things with their young eyes that a Kentucky girl only sees in movies. And it makes me even more passionate about welcoming our immigrants & refugees to this country with open arms.
So here they are, some quotes by my favorite kiddos, spoken in the classroom:
On learning English and its strange food names:
"J why didn't you get a hotdog for lunch?"
(*eyes wide, terrified*) "What is a hot dog?!?!"
On teachers' lives outside of school:
Me: "I'm running in a big race this weekend."
Student: "Ew. Why are you telling me about your big person life?"
On teachers' lives inside school:
Me: "Today we are going to read in my room instead of in the hallway."
Student: (after being in the room for about 15 minutes) "Mrs. Dahl, I don't see your bed. Where do you sleep?"
On the newest perfume:
Student A: "Something smells like dried-up corn."
Student B: "Oh yeah, it's my pants."
On favorite vacation spots:
"Tomorrow night I'm going camping with my dad in our backyard. We're going to sleep in a chicken coop. It's beautiful there."
On the art of storytelling:
"This weekend I was shakin' and vibratin' to the music with my cousin, and I hurt my heel! And then I wanted a bag of chips."
On things that kids shouldn't experience:
"A hut is a house. I lived in a hut. But it got burned down by mean men so we had to leave."
On my hair:
"Oh Mrs. Dahl, your hair is so sparkly!!!"
"Can I call you Mrs. Curly Fries?"
"How does your hair do that twisted-mctwister thing?"