November 14, 2012

Daily Life With 11-Year-Olds

Currently Reading: Al Capone Does my Shirts, by Gennifer Choldenko
Today is Exciting Because: Trader Joe's opens in Charlottesville!!!

Here is one thing I love about teaching middle school: they do all the same things I did in middle school. I mean, the doodles, the funny sayings, the jokes.

You know that bubble-letter 'S' that looks like this?

They still draw that.

You know that thing where you write T-H-I-S across your fingers and draw a bug on your palm and say the "This is Buggy. Buggy says "Hi"..." rhyme? They still do that.

Then there's the boy who likes to say "You dropped your pocket!" and laugh hysterically when you look down (I only fell for it the first of the 48392 times I heard this), and the girls who put exclamation marks after everything, even their names on the tops of worksheets. Seriously, it's like these things lurk in middle school hallways, just waiting for the next group of kids to attach themselves to.

But what else is funny is what happens when you give middle schoolers technology: you get to see typical middle school obsessions and behaviors unfolding in new ways. At my school, every student gets a Netbook, and one of my student has a background that rotates through pictures of One Direction. A lot of my students have iPhone or iTouches, and one kid showed me an app yesterday where you take a video of someone, and then you can add an effect where they are blown up or, in this case, a giant boulder drops on their heard. (It was actually pretty amusing.)

The moral of the story, then, is this: 11-year-olds will be 11-year-olds. And I get to be entertained by it every day.

[image source]

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