go to get a towel before shower
smattering of hand towels/washcloths available
probably has a giant stack of mildewing towels in his room
picking your battles
Classes are usually held in the STEM Lab, but there are times during the year that I need to push into classrooms due to testing. Last spring, I was in a fifth grade class teaching a lesson on flight. I really enjoy working with this particular classroom teacher because I think she does an outstanding job. Her teaching style seems effortless and yet she has the highest of expectations for behavior and achievement.
While I was working my way around the room helping small groups, one of the girls noticed that the side of my foot was bleeding a little bit. Since I was wearing sandals, I had probably scraped it on something and didn’t notice. One of the boys (I’ll call him A), who can be a bit of a handful, was struggling with frustration. I thought I would give him a minute to escape the project to regroup a little so I asked him to get me a bandaid. Without another thought, I returned to helping a student. A minute later, I heard a loud, shrill “A! WHAT ARE YOU DOING?” coming from the classroom teacher. I turned to see that A had donned a pair of rubber gloves and a paper mask and was victoriously holding a maxi pad high above his head. I died. It was one of the funniest things I have ever seen. The girls were mortified. The boys were equal parts amused/horrified/curious. Now I know that laughter is probably not the appropriate teacher response in this kind of situation, but I had to admire the kid’s efforts with all the protective gear. The classroom teacher and I made eye contact, and I grinned at her sheepishly. “I feel like this is partly my fault. I’m sorry.” Having never taught upper elementary, I didn’t realize they even had those supplies in the classroom. And I certainly never thought a bandaid mission would cause such a stir. A is a sixth grader this year and I still have a soft spot for that kid. Probably one of the funniest teaching moments I have ever had.