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Madness and Mayhem in the Classroom

Wednesday, May 17, 2017
posted by Jim Murphy

pigjpgIn addition to running an online radio station (Edgewater Gold Radio – The Best Oldies), writing this blog, I’m also a substitute teacher. Yesterday began as a normal day.  I got up ate breakfast and headed out the door to substitute at the area high school for an Agricultural Science Class. I’ve subbed for this class before so I’m aware that there are several breeds of animals in the classroom which is one of the reasons why I accepted this assignment. As I settled in and sipped my coffee something ran under the desk. I looked down and saw a little pig nibbling at my feet. At first I thought he escaped from his cage but a student came to me proclaiming that the pig was hers and said that he stays in this classroom while she attends her other classes. I was fine with it but was concerned that the other students may tantalize him. She assured me that the pig would be fine. So “Mr Pig” was an all day member of class. Not sure what possessed her to bring the pig to school but we’re living in another world today and maybe even on another planet!

Before the bell rang and the stampede of “animals of another kind” barged through the door. I made the rounds and checked out the variety of rabbits, ferrets, geckos, chinchillas and snakes that make their home in class. I then heard what sounded like baby chicks. I noticed a rabbits cage and 7 baby ducks huddled in the damp, cold corner. These ducks did not have any heat lamp to warm them and were given a bowl of rabbit pellets to eat. At first I thought ” how could this be?” This is an Agricultural Science Class and this is definitely not the way to care for baby ducks. Rabbit pellets?!! come on! I asked another student who came in early and was told that one of the kids took the ducks from the mother and brought them into the classroom. THERE GOES MY DAY! I was really upset that anyone would take baby ducks from their mother and that none of the “professionals” made an effort to care for them properly. We are living in a weird world! Suddenly one of the ducks turned over on its back, then another. Apparently they were thirsty and cold. I took them and tried to warm them by holding them next to me. (believe me I have layers on me that would warm a cow!) Sadly, neither duck made it and took their last breath. I was distraught at this point and class didn’t even begin yet. I asked a student to bury the two ducks.

As the first stampede of students arrived, I told one student who was actually interested in this class and obviously worked on a farm about the ducks and the fact that two just died. I asked him to take the ducks outside and put the cage in the warm sunlight. He agreed and I assigned two other students to help him.

The rest of the students arrived and the mayhem began. It really puzzles me that so many students today just take classes to fill time and it was clear that’s what the majority of these kids did. Nevertheless, I had a job to do so I gave them their assignment for the day. I knew that within ten minutes, I would hear “I’m done” because they just wouldn’t take the time to do the research to get the assignment done properly. It may take up too much of their “text and video time!” Let me clarify, there were several students that did a great job and made a real effort to complete the assignment but most did not.

In the meantime “Mr. Pig” was squealing and waddling around the class as the kids tried to get his attention. Suddenly the door then flew open and in walked a security guard with two students who were caught outside on the roof of the equipment building across the street. They were jumping from building to building. Apparently, when the students were outside putting the ducks in the sun, they slipped out unauthorized.  My “red” button clicked and I was no longer the kind, understanding sub that I usually am.  One student lost the lens to her glasses while performing acrobatics on top of the equipment building. She had the nerve to ask me to go outside again to find it. I told her that she has to “stumble” though the day with lens less glasses —too bad. When my “red” button lights, that’s it and it was glowing like Rudolph’s nose! I wrote the two students up, sent them to the office and made an effort to continue with my day.

I had three more classes to go, three more stampedes and more shouting “put down the squealing pig!”

The day finally came to an end but as I picked up the last assignment sheet that was thrown on the floor, I tried to figure out how we got to this point and what happened to the education system. It’s something that I can’t fix so I have to move on to my next assignment. Fortunately, the student who took interest in the baby ducks and worked on a farm took them home  to care for them properly because Lord knows they would have all died in that class!

So I’ll take the rabbits, the ferrets, the chinchillas, the gecko’s and the snakes……….you can have the kids!!

Remember, your pets count!

On a lighter note — Oldies will cheer you up –the best variety are right here!

Edgewater Gold Radio – Americans most unique oldies station!

You can find it along with two other great oldies stations on The Edgewater Internet Radio Network!



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