- 5 years ago
- Wedding: May 2013
So, I am going to be student teaching very soon, at the middle school level. However, before I do that I have to complete a practicum at the high school leve. I am being certified prek-12 visual arts.
I have only been in the placement for a week, and am already very upset to be feeling that high school might not be for me. I REALLY would love to teach at a level where the projects can be more involved and advanced. But I don’t know if I can deal with the high school guys!
I am supposed to act as an observer and teacher’s assistant. I have to teach one lesson at the end of the placement.
My supervising teacher started out putting me at a disadvantage by introducing me by my first name, rather than as Ms.________. I have since asked him not to address me that way in front of students, but I feel it’s too late – he has already put me more on their level than his and shown me disrespect and made them think they can treat me as a peer rather than an authority figure.
It doesn’t help that his classes are VERY unstructured, and kids are constantly sneaking their phones out (he ignores it and even encourages it if they want to show him something), moving seats, not ACTUALLY working on their end-of-semester assignments, and kids from the adjoining art room just wander over an camp out talking whenever they want!
So, bees, here’s my problem:
One student is being very inappropriate in the way he speaks to me. He talks down to me as if I was a fellow student, is a complete smart-ass, and mocks me in class.
First day, he introduces himself while I’m sitting in the office in between classes. I ask if he likes to draw (they have a drawing project right now), and he says “only when people don’t tell me what to do”. Later in class, he yells as I walk by, “hey are you the art lady?” and when I ask what he means, asks if I’m a student teacher. My supervising teacher had neglected to introduce me to this period of his art classes, so I told him I was not a student teacher, but would be observing his class. Then he asked if I would draw him a picture, since I was the “art lady”, and the last “art lady” drew him a picture. I told him my name, and that I had my own work to do, and so regrettably could not draw for him, and suggested that he finish his project.
Well. Then he said, “I’m taller than you, so you have to draw me a picture.”
I was flabberghasted (I’m 4’11”) and said something to the effect of, “I’m sorry, you can’t pull the height card with me. I think you should finish YOUR picture.”
As I walked away, I heard him say, “Ok, FART lady!”
I pretended I did not hear, but I didn’t know if that was the right thing to do. It was my first day as an intern, what was I going to do, give him detention? Yell at him the hall? Talk to him in the supervising teacher’s office? And the supervising teacher was in said office, oblivious to what was going on.
So, after this first day, it’s been nonstop. I am trying my best to not get visibly bothered by his remarks, or show that he is successfully making me feel like I have no authority… but he won’t give up. He refuses to call me by my name, tried to use my first name, and called me a “prude” when I told him no. He harrasses me everyday to draw a picture for him, and told me the student teacher he had last year did. Then, he showed me a picture that he claims said student teacher kept of his (basically, a penis and balls not-so-much-disguised as an elephant). Again, I had NO IDEA what to say to that! I just try not to interact with him but of course he won’t have that. I will not be forced to hide in the office to avoid one student!
Oh, and he has called me fart lady to my face now, 3 times. The first time, I brushed it off and told him that was something I expected to hear from a middle school kid, not a junior in high school. The other times, I ignored him, however, he did say it loud enough that at least one student heard him. I was going to pull the “Oh, were you trying to talk to me? I didn’t hear you say my name…” or something to that effect, but honestely I’m at a loss. I don’t want to give him attention for it, but don’t want to ignore it.
He tried to get me to tell him how old I am, saying I “couldn’t be more than 23” (I am – I took a teaching program after undergrad).
He’s a “good” student… meaning, he is smart, so he finishes everything and still has time to be a smart ass and distract all his friends. He doesn’t give the supervising teacher any problems, just waits until he is out of earshot to harrass me. So, my options are what? Go off on him (not professional), tattle tale to his teacher (not professional, not going to earn me any respect), ignore him and/or avoid him (again, allowing him to disrespect me to my face!), or try to befriend him and ignore the inappropriate remarks (not professional).
I’ve also had other high school boys in and out of class ask if I’m a student teacher, tell me I look nice, or just plain look me up and down. I DO NOT dress in anything inappropriate or revealing in any way. But I do have a 32Dirty Delete chest that is really hard to hide without looking like a bag lady. I went out and spent $$ I don’t have on shoes, dress pants, and non-revealing tops to try to avoid this problem. It is so frustrating.
What would you do? Especially with the inappropriate student.