Wouldn’t it be nice?

So I’m teaching a new class, and like all the other classes, there is always one student who reminds me of who I was as a teenager. This time it is a young guy with piercings, intelligence, and a tendency to jitter around in his seat. In the summer, it was a girl with short hair, dark Elvis Costello-like frames and a tendency for sarcasm and laughing at odd moments. When I was their age, I hated being a teen, yet looking at them as a teacher, I remember all the good times too. Every time I get a new class, I search the faces of my students, and I swear I can see their stories. I know the ones who have it easy socially, the ones who struggle, the closeted students, the cocky prick, and the smart conscientious one who probably runs the Earth club. I can enter a room for rambunctious kids, who always see this tiny lady (me) and think they’ll be able to talk shit and act out, and command it within minutes. I know the kids think I’ll be a push-over ( I’m not) and not funny (I am), and I love surprising them. What I love even more, is that often the most obnoxious students end up being my favorite because I’m able to bring out their good qualities. I wish I could have been so comfortable around teens as a teenager myself. What I wish I knew then that I know now…


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