What you say VS what they hear

5 Mar

We started our Ray Bradbury short story unit yesterday. Because the 6th graders don’t have much familiarity with his work, we begin reading the excellent obituary published in the New York Times on June 6, 2012.

I’ve been doing this lesson for years with no reaction.  For some reason, in both classes, as soon as I said the word “obituary”, I heard gasps and snickers. Apparently, all they had paid attention to was the second syllable. Cue the middle school teacher eye-roll.

I wrote the word on the board to clarify, but it was too late.

What has been heard, cannot be unheard.

Screen Shot 2019-03-04 at 2.29.19 PM

 

12 Responses to “What you say VS what they hear”

  1. Book Dragon March 5, 2019 at 6:26 am #

    What a perfect slice. Your post encapsulate a moment in time that we can relate to.

  2. arjeha March 5, 2019 at 6:43 am #

    Sixth graders…you gotta love them.

  3. deborahdillon March 5, 2019 at 7:44 am #

    Oh, boy! Murphy’s law has a keen presence in the classroom for sure.
    Thank you for the chuckle – I can totally relate!

  4. jumpofffindwings March 5, 2019 at 7:47 am #

    Weird that middle schooler focus. I never know what they’ll pick, but it’s always something! (Love “cue eye-roll.”)

  5. thelifeofamomteacherandwife March 5, 2019 at 10:02 am #

    Oh middle schoolers! They certainly hear what they want to hear…sometimes an eye roll is all you can do.

  6. khays41 March 5, 2019 at 1:16 pm #

    Middle school humor…whattya gonna do? LOL and move on. The only problem is that I haven’t taught MS for years and I still have middle school humor problems. For example, my first grade teaching partner will often yell out ‘HOLD YOUR BALLS’ during recess. All I can do is giggle and snicker because…..middle school humor problems.

  7. Mrs. Tice March 5, 2019 at 3:26 pm #

    Been there!

    Middle-schoolers’ underdeveloped frontal lobes cause my eyes to roll a lot anymore. But, I think the bigger takeaway from your Slice that I have is that they are not as familiar with connotation behind the word.

    Who laughs when it comes to someone’s obituary? Middle-schoolers who only hear the word’s second syllable!

  8. ebgriffin March 5, 2019 at 3:41 pm #

    Love those middle schoolers!

  9. terierrol March 5, 2019 at 3:50 pm #

    Oh, how true – they only hear what they hear, especially in middle school!

  10. Lisa Corbett March 5, 2019 at 3:52 pm #

    LOL With the little kids, they are always accusing others of using swear words and then I find out that they think everything (stupid, idiot, jerk) is a swear word! LOL

  11. Brian Rozinsky March 5, 2019 at 5:23 pm #

    Son of obituary? (Sorry.) Thanks for the link to the Bradbury piece. I have some students starting _Fahrenheit 451_ who might explore it as an extension.

    • Adrienne March 5, 2019 at 5:48 pm #

      OMG. I am surprised no one came up with that yesterday!!!

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