- 8:17 pm - Sat, Jul 21, 2012
- 245 notes
I still remember grabbing this card. It belonged to A., one of my very favorite kids of all-time.
A. worked as hard for me as any student I’ve ever had in class, but it was for naught. He could retain main concepts and ideas, but he had a learning disability that turned his brain to bubble gum anytime his eyes wanted read or hands wanted write.
When the school had its Parent Night, A. showed up wearing a tie, escorting a thin, older woman around. He walked up and said, “Sir, it is my pleasure to introduce you to my mother, [M.].” He made it easy to like him. After a while, I openly rooted for his successes and secretly mourned his failures.
I found a model car one day in a storage room on campus and gave it to A. to work on (he was always pretending to read car magazines in the library). There were 100 pieces to that thing. It was a mess. He brought it to class the next day and said, “Look, I finished it.” I couldn’t believe it. “I like putting stuff together,” he said. I smiled and shook his hand and he smiled and turned and walked away. It remains one of the most substantial moments of my teaching career.
When I pulled this card out I looked at it and immediately knew it was A.’s. I looked up and his eyes —everyone’s eyes— were on me, the class waiting to stifle their giggles at whatever it was I about to read. I tried desperately to decipher it. I couldn’t. “What does it say?,” asked one of the kids. “I’m not certain,” I replied. The cards were always done anonymously, but A. seemed to know it was his. He slouched in his chair just a tiny bit. And I hated the entire world for that moment.