One of my students is the child of my boss, who took me aside this afternoon with a glint in her eye.
“What’s up?” I asked.
“I just have to tell you,” she said, “Amanda was up in her room last night, completely losing her shit.”
“Oh, dear,” I said. “What was wrong?”
“That’s the thing,” she replied, “I don’t know. When I went up there to ask what the problem was, she looked me full in the face, threw her hands in the air, and said “YOUR ENGLISH TEACHER!’ Not “MY English teacher,” but YOURS, as in “it’s all YOUR fault because you HIRED this crazy woman!”
We both had a pretty good chuckle at that. Amanda is an exceedingly bright girl. She’s always willing to talk in class, but she has an almost crippling fear of writing.
I know EXACTLY why Amanda was mad at me last night; I was asking her to write – to tell a story about how reading has influenced her development as a person – and the act was terrifying to her. I’m not sorry, though; one of my goals for this year is to get her over this baseless fear she has and show her that she CAN write. I’m even betting, once she slays whatever demons she’s battling over this, she’s going to be a spectacular writer, at that.
Still, I think it’s kind of funny that she’s blaming her mother’s hiring decisions for her stress in English class…