Saturday, November 5, 2011

Pretending I'm Not Scared

This disgusting creature is what I realized was crawling on the wall behind me in the middle of a math demonstration.

I was alerted to this fact by the sudden outburst of 29 children screeching and jumping out of their chairs.

Did I mention my illogical fear of creepy crawlies? Look, I've already killed spiders and various other disgusting things in the classroom that were well over my 3 millimeter threshold of fear. All while pretending to be calm, of course.

This thing? I'm estimating he was about 3 inches long. No way was I attempting a whack at this thing, climbing over the Smartboard. What if I missed, but knocked it off, only to have it land on my head? I'd be quickly joining the ranks of the screaming and jumping kids.

Thank heavens I teach sixth grade. One of my boys got up, looked at the screaming crew (mostly girls) and struck it down in one blow. The girls were impressed, which he enjoyed.

5 minutes later, I was finally able to resume the math lesson. After of course, a mini-lecture on how not to react when you see a bug. "Good grief guys, have you never seen a bug before? What is there to be scared of?"


  1. I can totally relate Hilary. Being a teacher is not an easy thing. We forget it is a human endeavor with people interacting everyday as life happens. Your blog reminded me of my first teaching job interview.
    This particular school system that I was interviewing for required that I give a model lesson with real children,(that I had not previously met). I was to give a guided reading lesson while a panel of three administrators observed me give the lesson!
    As I was dividing the children into reading groups, one of the second graders yelled out: "Ay Missy, I peed in my pants!" I saw the look in his eyes of terror and the beginning of feelings of shame and I said to myself: "There is no way any child is going to laugh at this boy. If I have to stop the lesson and lose the job I don't care!" I calmly said to Javier; "Just come over here, don't worry everybody in this room has had an accident before, even me. Here's the pass to the nurse. When you're finished, you can come back and continue with the activity." I gave him a hug, he didn't cry and he came back!
    I got the job and the panel said that they had never seen such classroom management skills from a teacher! What they didn't know was that I felt like peeing in my pants too! I always remember Javier whenever I am in an uncomfortable public situation. Everyone has accidents too! We just don't know it.

  2. As a teacher, you could at least learn enough biology to know that this bug is harmless. Why this automatic reaction to kill something ? Apart from that, I like your site, refreshingly different.