Yesterday when I was tutoring R. she was writing some letters in cursive, but since she's had a month off since summer school we're having to relearn some of them. She wrote a "p" that was a real mess. She backed up (she was writing on the sliding glass door) and said, "Ugh, that looks more like a dinosaur." So then she gave the dino some arms, legs, and claws, and as she was drawing she said to herself, "Who knew you could have so much fun writing p's?"
Today one of my 2nd-graders opened our lesson time by asking me why my fingers were so long. "They're so long and skinny! It's creepy!" One of the things I love about being 40+ is being able to enjoy my students' curiosity about my body without feeling bad. She asked me if somebody stretched them when I was little. "Yes," I replied deadpan, "when I was born my mom didn't like my fingers so she asked the doctor to stretch them out." Looks of confusion, disgust, and fear on all 4 faces. Then I grinned real big - they didn't get it. "Really?! How?" etc. etc. Then I winked real big - they still didn't get it. So I told them I was KIDDING, I was just born this way, and the 2nd-grader joked, "Are you an alien?" "Yes!" I replied. "And now that you've guessed my secret I must get you!" I got out of my chair and walked toward her with my long, creepy fingers held out. She squealed and laughed, and when I got close enough I gave her a wet willie (licked my finger and stuck it in her ear - it seemed appropriate for the context - I'm taking a gamble that "wet willies" are not mentioned in the teacher handbook).
Later I introduced a new letter combination and passed around the bag with the object in it that had that combination. The kids are supposed to reach into the bag without looking and guess the object. Last week I started teasing the 2nd-graders with the bag, telling them things like, "Be careful when you reach in, it bites." The next time we used the bag, a student asked, "Does it bite?" "No." I said, then after the student put his hand in, I said, "It licks." "Ewww! Aaagh!" etc. etc. Today's object was a turtle, and I have one with a hard plastic shell and squishy, rubbery body parts. One kid decided he wasn't even going to chance it, touched the outside of the bag quickly with his index finger, and passed it on. I assured him that it was okay, and he knew the other times were jokes, so he took the bag back and cautiously reached his hand in. I was on the other side of the table, leaning back against the white board all casual-like, and when his hand was in the bag I jumped at him and said, "AAAHHH!!!" His eyes got huge and he screamed and jumped back and laughed. I did this to N. once, too - just can't get enough.
As I entered my classroom at the end of my lunch hour, one of my 1st-graders jumped out from behind the table and yelled "AAAHHHH!!!" I screamed and jumped - he really got me. Kids these days.
This evening, N. and I were playing a game that involved asking each other questions. I asked him questions related to what we've covered so far and told him he could ask me anything. After asking me to spell onomonopeia, or whatever, his 2nd question was, "What is my mom's favorite kind of wine?" I cracked up, Mom said "What?!", I guessed rose, the answer (which N. didn't know) was chardonnay (sp?). So for my next question I made N. spell chardonnay, which he worked through, then I told him I wasn't really sure how to spell it. His next question was (teasing me), "Why are you so mean?" "Because it's fun!" I said, and pushed him off his stool. Except that he caught his balance before he completely fell, so I had to pull the stool out from under him, sit on him, and give him a wet willie in each ear. Mother approved. I love this family. :)