What do you want kids to say about you?

I was out yesterday and happened to end up sitting next to five six graders.  They were talking about all the typical things that sixth graders would talk about and then they shifted to a serious discussion about their teachers.  I have to say before describing their conversation that all of my teachers sensors said that this was a great bunch of kids, the kind you would want in your class.  Also when the conversation shifted to school they were being serious, they were not trying to insult their teachers.  At first I was just listening, but then had to take out and pen and paper to write down some quotes(might be a few words off but they are pretty close).

“I made one line crocked and she took off points.  It didn’t change the meaning and no one else on the world would have cared.”

“I put one extra space in between the answers and she took off points.”

“I got a ‘B’ on my spelling test.  He asked me what I thought.  I thought a B was pretty good but I said ‘I think I should work harder.’  “

“Even when we do great on work and work hard they find something to mark wrong so you can feel bad about yourself.”

“They always make sure they they find something on your paper that they take off points so that they can say ‘I taught them something.'”

They went on and on and eventually just started laughing at all the actions of their teachers.  What started to take shape were not the lessons they learned from their teacher’s comments, words, actions, or assignments, but how they learned to play the system to keep them off their back.  Even when the teacher thought they were learning, it was just them giving the teacher what they wanted to keep their grade up and the negative comments at bay.

Well of course I started to think about what my students were saying about me as they got together over the weekend.  Yes, of course they talk about me when they get together.  I am definitely more interesting than Lady GaGA.  Then my mind shifted to what would I want them to say.  What kind of class experience would I want them to be describing?

What are your kids saying about you?  Put five of them into a room and what do they say about the time they spend with you?  If you are middle/high school they spend about 170 hours a year with you.  What impression are those hours leaving? If you are an elementary teacher, or a homeschooler, they spend a whole lot more.

I have some homework homelearning for you.  Find an image that best depicts the experience you want your kids to have.  You could interpret that as meaning your personal children, future kids, or current students.  So whether you are a college professor, a homeschooler, a 3rd grade teacher, an online educator, or even if you don’t have any children yet I would love for you to contribute.  If you are a student choose an image that depicts how you would like your education to be.  Just click on the link and follow the directions.


1-Click on an empty slide to the left.
2-Click on Insert—>then image
3-Select the image from your computer or the url
4-Flickr images need to be saved and uploaded
5-Place any personal information you would like under the image
6-Click save and close

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