I Can’t Believe I Still Have to Teach This…

dixiecupseedlings11-27-07001Two little stories from today:

The sweet young maintenance man who cleans my classroom is great to chat with.  Of course, in this season of colds and flu we compare notes.  He recently got back to work after having strep.  We were chatting about how he felt and he said, “I’m feeling better- I don’t need my medicine anymore.”

It sent chills through me.  I thought everybody knew how important it is to finish a prescribed course of antibiotics.   Taking part of it allows bacteria to mutate and resist future antibiotics and we are well and truly running out of bacteria-fighting options.   My dad’s death was hastened by an antibiotic-resistant infection.

I tell my young friend that he should take all the pills he was given- that it is important to finish the prescription.  A few days later when we talk he tells me he just finished the medicine.

And so I realize that people continually need education.  Sort of like the old lady at the Women’s March carrying a sign that said, “I can’t believe I still have to fight for this s***t.”

Like today as I had my second graders plant seeds in cups.  Such an old chestnut, and surely these kids have planted plenty of seeds.  But no, I am surprised that they need to be taught to push the seeds down and cover them up.  To water them gently and thoroughly.  I am surprised at how they love their seed cups and they ask me over and over, “Can we keep them?  Can we take them home?”  Such a simple thing but still new to them.

So re-teaching is both a bane and a blessing.

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7 thoughts on “I Can’t Believe I Still Have to Teach This…

  1. Even in retirement we teachers find how to awaken the mind of a child. It is what we do. I really loved how you used the custodian and your need to advise him up against the surprise you had with the children’s need to learn about planting. It’s a great circle of age, subject, and your role! Thanks for writing!

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  2. I totally agree – after 15 years of teaching, there are things I can’t believe I’m still teaching to my intermediate students (Sentences start with a capital letter!) I do love seeing some things through my students’ eyes – it can bring joy to the day.

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  3. Sometimes teaching seems like a re-run, one we’ve seen too many times. But the joy the kids have about planting seeds never gets old!
    (And I think it’s great that you have those conversations with the young custodian.)

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  4. What a great reminder that everything old is new again. I’ve been guilty of not finishing antibiotics and honestly, while I’ve been told it is important to finish them, I’m pretty sure no one ever mentioned the WHY behind it. What a difference knowing the WHY makes!

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  5. I could write an entire post in response as a comment!

    I’ll just say AMEN and mention that it reminds me so, so much of my teenaged daughter. I’ve tried, really. I think it’s a matter of selective hearing and learning the hard way sometimes.

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