Friday, December 28, 2012

los maestros locos

I am an art teacher, and I will never arm myself with a gun to teach. I will arm myself with paintbrushes and chalk and paper and even xacto knives, but never a gun. 

Reader, teachers are crazy. Teachers spend the better part of the day with your children. Not just your kid, Spandex-Mafia-Mom, but your neighbors’ kids too. And your cleaning lady’s kids-- all the little childrens. Start with the assumption that teachers are people with a gift for sharing information, they are the magicians of classroom management, and the sowers of internal motivation-- but they are a little crazy.

And as we’ve seen, crazy people should not have access to guns.

Kindergarten teachers think middle school and high school teachers are brave and crazy—high schoolers are so ornery! So hairy! So smelly!  Middle school and high school teachers think the kindergarten teachers are patient and crazy—little ones are so needy and sometimes they pee themselves in class!
If anyone has ever been to middle school or knows or has known a middle schooler, then you know what’s up—middle school teachers are the craziest vatos out there. Middle school teachers are even crazier then pre-school teachers. Los maestros locos. 

You do not want to arm teachers with guns. Teachers are crazy. Do not give them guns. Fund education, and hire more teachers! Hire teachers to inspire with the arts and teachers to care for the emotionally disturbed and teachers for accelerated learners and teachers for slow learners and teachers to keep classes small and teachers to make sure kids with SERIOUS issues are not neglected and rejected but protected and respected. Use the money for funds, not guns, and hire more teachers.

Also, if crazy isn’t enough of an argument to avoid arming teachers with guns, please consider Mrs. Flynt and Mr. Gargled.

I started my second year of teaching at a new school and a lunchtime crew of students started to share all kinds of crazy gossip about my new colleagues. Like, the ninth grade English teacher was *involved* with the athletic director.  And also, Mrs. Flynt is drunk every day by 4th period.

What? No way. Mrs. Flynt could not be drunk. That would be so unprofessional. Mrs. Flynt is a boisterous fun-loving science teacher high on the joys of standards based teaching! But then I sat next to Mrs. Flynt during a faculty meeting and when she asked me Hhhhoooow is your first semester going? it was confirmed that Mrs. Flynt enjoyed a nip for sure. You don't want to give the Mrs. Flynts of the world a gun.
Mr. Gargled taught P.E. and was generally quite affable—physical exercise is a mood booster. But one day, after he took roll and turned his back on the students, someone threw a tennis shoe at Mr. Gargled and it hit him smack in the back of his head. I know the shoe hit him in the head, even though I was teaching art clear on the other side of campus, because he would not stop talking about it at another faculty meeting. Have you ever seen red-rage-faced-student-induced anger?

Perhaps he was mad at being disrespected and/or mad that he couldn’t figure out who threw the shoe and get them on the baseball or softball teams immediately; force and accuracy are excellent athletic qualities. Clearly, there was a great pitcher with good aim in that class who would remain anonymous until he or she outed themselves, 'cause nobody in Mr. Gargled’s class was snitching, not even with extra miles. You do not want to give the Mr. Gargleds of the world a gun.

Funds, not guns.

*excessive faculty meetings are deff'ly an affront to the soul.  the only thing that could make faculty meetings more unbearable would be faculty meetings with armed and highly caffeinated teachers. 

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