Wednesday, October 03, 2007

Feeling Totally Nadir

A miserable day today. I tried not to let it be, but I couldn't ignore it. I had to keep a sophomore student after school today for throwing something across the room. When he said he would leave instead of staying after school, I suggested that that would be a bad choice.

"Why?" he asked.

"Because I would have to refer you to the office, then."

He then proceeded to tell me that I was the worst teacher he'd ever had. It was a mini diatribe, too, not just a tossed off phrase.

And that was the end of my day. Literally (it was the end of the day) and figuratively (it kind of sucked).

There is more to the story, but the point is that that just messed me up. I am already struggling with my sophomores, and this little episode didn't fill me with any more confidence.

To top it off, after I decompressed and processed with my mentor, I came home to find that the dog had puked on the carpet in the office. Can it get any better?

I shouldn't let the quality of my day be determined by the capricious whims of fifteen year olds. And yet, I do.



Anonymous said...

Some words of solace:

1. That whole misery loves company thing. Today I had an awful day at work too. I felt like crap and that I can't do anything well. I wish you didn't have a day like this, but at least we both were traversing the nadir together.

2. Sophomores. Wise fools. My guess is that his calling you the worst teacher he's ever had actually indicates that you are exactly the teacher he needs right now. Lucky you. Sometimes being a much-needed, talented teacher is a thankless job.

3. Teaching. I'll take this opportunity to restate a relatively recent comment I had made on a previous blog: I would hope that my child would have a teacher like you someday. You are thoughtful, creative, dedicated, and kind of smart too. :) Not that you don't already know this; I just thought that this would be a nice occasion to remind you.

May our respective days rise from the nadir tomorrow. No new nadirs to come anytime soon, I hope.


Magdalene said...

I second the above comments, especially about the kid reacting to a teacher in that way because it's probably exactly what he needs.

Since I've been strolling down memory lane recently a la Poly style- I remember that a couple of the teachers that I really struggled with at the time (Zolin, Wachter, Loughlin, Parker) were hard a**es but the ones who I remember and admire in my adulthood.

I am sure the same will be true for you. I totally respect you for trying to mould America's teenagers into something worthwhile.

On a separate but related note, I came to your blog to post this link and ask your opinion on this. I personally thought it's a good idea, but then I'm an involved type of parent.

Hope you're feeling better soon.

Magdalene said...

hmmm....i don't think the link is working

Magdalene said...

Does this work? If not, let me know how to get the link to you.

comoprozac said...

Try this.

Dude, if I had a nickel for every time I was told that I was the worst teacher a student has ever had, I'd have like 15 or 20 cents. Hang in there. You know that it's really about his low self-esteem. He wants you to feel as crappy as he does. (Does this explanation ever really help?)

Jami said...

Really...WOW???? There are a whole bunch of kids at my school that lament your absence everyday....
and Austin Perry mentioned you in his last correspondence with me. Now that's a stellar kid.
You want I should send some naked babies to bust some sophomore knee caps?