First day follies

28 Aug

“Can I help you find a room?” I asked the sparkly clean but perplexed 6th grader who was wandering the halls at a strange time.

He pulled out the paper with his new schedule, transliterated from computerese into sixth-gradish. “I’m looking for Mr. Nelson’s room,” he said pointing to the class he was looking for.

“Oh, his room is there, ” I replied pointing, “but that class isn’t now. You should be in the gym for PE.”

“But I just came from there,” he said, brow wrinkled.

“Just go back and tell Mr. V you should be there now. He’ll understand. It’s why  only 6th graders come on the first day,” I said encouragingly, and smiled.

Off he went.

And then he was back.

This time, though, I had my elective class was in my room. I brought the young man in and we began what looked like a “Who’s on first” comedy routine.

In the end, we figured it out. He’d gotten a bit ahead of the schedule, so I sent him on his way. I saw him later, coming out of Mr. Nelson’s room at the right time.

“How’s it going?” I asked.

“I got this now!” he replied over his shoulder as he walked confidently down the hall to his next elective.


6 Responses to “First day follies”

  1. Amanda Potts August 28, 2018 at 5:47 am #

    “I got this now!” What a perfect encapsulation of the first day of school. I love how persistence leads to competence in this anecdote.

  2. wahooteacher August 28, 2018 at 12:22 pm #

    This made me think of my former students who are now sixth graders! I hope they had someone just like you to help them out!

  3. terierrol August 28, 2018 at 1:45 pm #

    Negotiating new surroundings can be difficult. Thank goodness for the kindness of strangers.

  4. Lisa Corbett August 28, 2018 at 4:33 pm #

    This will be his anxiety-induced nightmare for the rest of his life! LOL

  5. Brian Rozinsky August 28, 2018 at 9:11 pm #

    When that switch flips from don’t-got-this to got-this, it’s a thrill. One which can sustain us through subsequent moments when there might be temporary backsliding to don’t-got-this 🙂

  6. arjeha August 29, 2018 at 10:35 am #

    Where I taught fifth graders were the newbies in the middle school. It always took them a good week learning the ropes of going from self contained to departmental.

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