I have another student in my class. We’ll call him “Timmy.” Between Billy and Timmy, my year has been . . . challenging at times. Timmy is a very nice boy. He’s also well below grade level, and his dad speaks very broken English. I think his mom speaks only Spanish. So you can guess Timmy’s English isn’t the best.
As I was letting my class get drinks in the classroom (we had just come back from “Gold Rush” practice), I noticed Timmy lingering at the drinking fountain. I told him that his table had already got a drink and that he needs to sit down, but he just kept drinking, for like 5 more seconds! I was furious!
Now, I didn’t realize this, but Timmy’s table had just been called to get a drink. And Timmy was the last person at his table to get a drink. So technically, I was wrong. He had permission to get a drink. So I felt bad about asking him to sit down. But the fact remained that I had given him directions and he ignored me. You just can’t do that. If I ask you to sit down and you are still haven’t had a chance to get a drink yet, stop drinking and explain to me that you haven’t had a chance. Don’t ignore me.
I think it’s hard when I make a mistake, but the student does as well. I always try to make sure I admit my mistakes to the class. It’s sometimes embarrassing, and sometimes I feel really bad about the mistakes I have made. There’s nothing worse than punishing a student, and then after the punishment finding out I was wrong and the student was innocent. That sucks!
But even when I am wrong, if the student has not followed directions, the student needs to face a consequence for that decision.