October 7, 2009

what made my day today

Almost every day, I have a handful of kids stay in at recess to make up hw. Today, after finishing his, one of my students came up to my desk.

"Miss Teacher, do you believe in finders keepers losers weepers?"

"Hmm...no, i don't really think so."
"You don't?"
"No, why?"
"Just asking."
"Well, I think that if you lose something, and someone found it, wouldn't you like them to return it to you?"
"What if you had no idea whose it was?"
"Well, you could put it in the lost and found."
"What if it was something that didn't belong at school?"
"Are you asking me this for a specific reason?"
My student reached into his pocket and pulled out a nintendo ds game he had found.

At first, i didn't know quite what to say. I knew i should choose my words very carefully.
"If that were yours, wouldn't you want it back?"
"Why don't you bring that to the office."
He agreed.
"I'm proud of you, by the way. It can be really hard to do the right thing sometimes. Thank you for letting me know that."
That's what I said out loud, but it didn't do justice to the pride I was feeling about this student. He's not the kid you'd expect to find a game and tell the teacher about it. I could tell he was a little conflicted about the whole thing. But I am SO incredibly proud that he did. It's moments like this that make me feel like i just might be doing my job. Even if i wasn't the one who made him think, "hey, maybe i should return this game," he at least knew that he could come ask me about it. The fact that this student, one who frequently forgets his hw, one who can have an attitude at times, and who doesn't often come to me just for a chat, the fact that he knew he could come ask me what i thought, makes me feel like i've made some impact on him. i teach for moments like this.

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