Since it is Teacher Appreciation Week, I figured I would pull out a "when I used to be a teacher" story:
As you know, I used to teach high school. You may have not known that I was a "Home Ec" teacher. (The correct term is Family and Consumer Sciences.) I remember one time in college, I was somewhere with my mom and somebody asked what I was majoring in. I guess I kind of apologetically said that I was "just going to be a Home Ec teacher" and my mom said something I'll never forget. She said, "Don't EVER apologize for doing what you love. You are good at what you do, and those classes you teach can make a major difference in the lives of your kids. Be proud of the career you've chosen." I have carried that with me and know without a doubt that my classes changed some people's lives for the better. For example, I had a Child Development class for awhile. The boys (who got stuck in there) would actually tell me at the end of the semester that they thought "every boy should have to take this class." But I digress.
In Child Development, we had to send those stupid electronic babies home with the kids. You know, the ones that are programmed to cry.
They had to take it from Friday after school to Monday morning before school. (For the record, I hate those things. It does the job for most kids... shows them that it stinks to be woken up every 2 hours in the middle of the night, adds an extra level of responsibility in the car - if you don't secure it properly and it gets too shook up, the baby dies - , etc. However, it totally backfires for those kids that are starving for attention. They start having people come up and talk to them while they are in the mall. They start getting attention and think, "Hmmm. If I had a baby, all these people would continue to talk to me." I was also the Teen Parent coordinator on campus, so I actually kind of know what I'm talking about.) So ANYWAY. I had a student in one of my Child Development classes named Samantha.
I'm not going to lie, the first day of school, I was like..."Wow, this girl has had a hard life." She looked a little worn and rugged. Pretty, but tough. Always wore sweat pants and a ponytail. She made a 100 on every single paper/test she completed and had very neat handwriting. She never spoke up in class and while always polite, she never really interacted much with me, even when I tried. She showed up on time the Friday afternoon that she was assigned to take her "baby" home. She returned it on Monday morning, and her computer showed that she had tended to it every single time it cried. She scored a 100 on it. Didn't think much more about her - it was a semester class, so once January hit, she wasn't in my class anymore.
At the end of the year, we all got quite a surprise.....
She was 35 years old and an undercover cop! (And obviously her name wasn't really Samantha.)
Apparently her colleagues got quite a kick of her toting around that stupid baby. I would have to say that this was a pretty memorable moment from my teaching career. Yikes.