Tag Archives: students

Boys Are Gross

My 4th grade student told me about her slightly older brother having a sleepover with his friends at their apartment.

Kid: “So I knew he was having a sleepover with all boys so OBVIOUSLY I made plans to sleep at my friend’s house.”

Me: “Oh, yeah. Wise move.”

Kid: “But then my friend got sick and I couldn’t go! So I had to be there with all the boys. AND IT WAS CHAOS.”

Me: “Oh, I can imagine! Boys can be wild.”

Kid: “Yeah but you don’t even understand. Before they went to bed…they did the grossest thing…”

Me: “I’m scared….”


Me (relieved but feigning drama): “What?! NO! Their SHIRTS?!”

Kid: “I know. It. Was. DISGUSTING! Boys are soooo gross!!!”

Oh, girlfriend. Just you wait.


Tales From the State Test

Dear NYC Department of Education,


You’re probably looking at this photo and thinking “Hmmm, what am I looking at here?”

Well I’ll tell you what you’re looking at.

This is a picture of a GIANT FUCKING COCKROACH, roughly the size of my man-handed fist, trapped underneath a book bin, then secured with a chair. This massive fella decided to show himself in the middle of the NY state test today, casually sauntering across the library floor like he owned the place, causing two of my 4th graders to jump out of their chairs, and, subsequently, the entire room to start screaming bloody murder.

As the only adult in the room, I had to act quickly and maturely.  This consisted of me screaming “EVERYBODY STAY CALM!!!!!!” like a batshit psycho, while darting across the room to the shelves, grabbing the nearest book bin, dumping out the entirety of its contents onto a table where 4 kids were test-taking, holding my breath, and trying to retrace the life choices that had lead me to this exact moment in time, so that I could undo them.

Once I trapped it beneath the bin, I put a chair on top of it, just in case that motherfucker decided to try something funny. Trust no one, DOE.

After the chair was secured and I had both swallowed the vomit in my throat and wiped the tears from my eyes, the kids were asked to sit for another hour, alongside the cockroach, and finish their exams.

So that’s why everyone failed.

Miss Emily

The Student Becomes the Teacher

After I posted Yes. That’s Exactly What the Beatles Were Going For., someone alerted me to the fact that the song “Blackbird” was, in fact, inspired by the civil rights movement. A quick google search during my lunch break confirmed this was true. So after lunch, I approached the kid.

Me: “So guess what? You know how this morning you said ‘Blackbird’ was about black people being free? And we said that was maybe a possibility, but that seemed a bit specific, and perhaps there was a larger theme of overcoming adversity and being brave? Well, it turns out you were exactly correct. Paul McCartney, who wrote the song, said that when he wrote the lyrics, he was inspired by the black women in the Civil Rights movement, who were fighting to be treated equally.”

Kid: “Yeah. I know.” (walks away)






I think I handled this with aplomb

Kid: “Miss Emily, can you please look at this for me?”

(This = the inside of his gums, where he had a huge, raging canker sore)

Me: “I’m looking. And I see. So I’m going to stop looking now.”
Kid: “Well it’s just that it hurts. Do you see anything?”
Me: “Yes. It appears you have a canker sore.”
Kid: “Will it kill me?”
Me: “What?! No. No it will not.”
Kid: “Are you sure?”
Me: “Yes. Canker sores are annoying and unpleasant, but they go away and they will certainly not kill you.”
Kid: “Is it like a cold sore? Because a cold sore can kill you.”
Me: “It’s different from a cold sore…but last time I checked, a cold sore will not kill you either.”
Kid: “Well that’s not true. You don’t always get them in your mouth…”
Me: “This conversation is over. Please get back to work.”

And then I stood up, went to the other side of the room, and hid behind the math center.

Because that’s what you do when a 9-year-old alludes to genital herpes.

You run away and hide behind a bin of protractors.



No. What’s a blog? 


Kid: “Do you know what a blog is?”

Me: “Hmmm…No. What’s a blog?”

Kid: “It’s like an internet page where you write things and put pictures and stuff. My teacher has one.”

Me: “Really?”

Kid: “Yeah, it’s a blog for our classroom. It talks about all the cool things we do in school, tells the parents what we’re learning, and she write notes about how proud she is of us.”

Right. Just like my blog. 

Look At Him Now!

Moments ago in CVS, I ran into a former student of mine who is now in 5th grade…

Me: “Hey there, kiddo!”
Kid: “Oh hi, Miss Emily! You know, it’s funny that I’m running into you because I was actually just thinking about how I behaved as your student in Kindergaretn, 1st, and 3rd grade, and boy was I a terror! I’m so sorry about that. Now that I’m in 5th grade and about to go to middle school, I realize that my behavior was very unfair to you, and to the other kids in the class. So I just want to say thank you. I really appreciate all the time and energy you took to get me through those years, and I promise all your hard work really paid off, because look at me now!”

Then I snapped out of my delusion and saw that rather than return my greeting, the kid had run away and hidden behind a rack of gum.