I have to bring my children to work with me tomorrow.
My girls – Punkin’ Pie, aged 9 and Beanie, aged 7-nearly-8 – are on vacation from school this week. My husband was planning on being able to take long lunches so he could come home to be with them while I teach from 11 to 1 on Tuesday and Thursday, but he ended up staying home from work today. That means that he really can’t blow off that much time tomorrow, so my daughters are coming to college with Mommy.
It’s not them I’m worried about, really, and I’m SO glad that I didn’t have to bring them to my Monday class. Many of my students are slightly less than mature; in fact, many of them are still in that dangerous stage of being rebellious, rambunctious teens with grown-up responsibilities and freedoms. While my Tuesday/Thursday class is far less – shall we say, exuberant? – than my Monday class, there are still a few students in the room who won’t know how to behave appropriately around young children. I’m secretly hoping that at least one of them decides to blow off my class tomorrow; I’m afraid that having my girls as guests in the room will simply light the “let’s see how far we can push Mrs. Chili” fuse, just to see if the tolerance level is altered by the presence of my children.
What I should really be concerned about, though, is that my girls might show a couple of my students up. I have very thoughtful, very intelligent, highly literate children. They know what pronoun to use in sentences. They know how to tell a story from beginning to end. They may be a little shaky on where all the commas go, but they read and speak eloquently. It will do nothing for the confidence of my less-than-able students if they feel they’ve been bested by a couple of elementary school children.
My hope is that I can get the girls involved in activities other than what’s happening in the class. I’ll encourage them to bring Game Boys, iPods, and books, and I’ll probably bring my computer and a pair of headphones so they can play games online while the class is happening. I’d really rather they not participate in the writing assignments or the discussion – however much they may want to – because it could get weird for my students. We’re so close to the end of the term, and I can’t afford to lose them now.