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Saturday, December 6, 2008

The Gift of Intolerance: Part II

The story doesn't stop there.

Nick actually managed to tag Ethan at least twice with the chair leg before one of my Teaching Assistants realized what was happening and went to grab him. I was out the door like a shot and running down the hall after him because at this point, Nick was heading for the girls' classroom and the emergency exit.

I could just barely see him rounding the corner into the girls' classroom and I ran a little faster, knowing that if he made it out the back door I'd be chasing him down the hill and out onto the main road that ran behind our campus. I busted through the door and found that Nick had slowed down a little, trying hard to navigate the cluster of desks that had been thrown into disarray. I took a chance and flying Superman tackled him to the ground, trying to put him into some sort of restraint. Unfortunately, the floors of our school happened to be concrete slabs, thinly disguised with indoor/outdoor carpeting and I slammed my knee on the floor with a sickening thud. Thankfully Nick stopped struggling when he was realized he was outnumbered by staff and I could feel one of my TAs carefully lifting me up and carrying me to the nurse's office.

The next day I came back to work with my knee in a brace and a headache the size of a small third world country. Nick came into class and sat down quietly, barely even looking at me, while the rest of the kids trailed in behind him. Except for Ethan. Ten minutes into homeroom, Ethan was still nowhere to be seen.

"Anyone know where Ethan is?" I asked, from my comfortable, seated position behind my desk from whence I would be overseeing my kingdom for the next two weeks. My TAs shook their heads, looking from one to the other with worried expressions on their faces. Great, they had lost a kid. "GO LOOK FOR HIM DAMNIT!" They dispersed, looking mildly frightened, while I quietly banged my head on my desk. Moments later the door to my classroom burst open and Ethan came flying in. Nick was already out of his seat, prepared for the incoming attack. Thankfully Ethan didn't get a chance to get within arm's reach of Nick, as two of my TAs managed to grab him and put him down on the floor while a third TA wrestled his fingers open.

It turned out that Ethan had a thumbtack in each of his greasy little paws. While my TAs held him down he frothed at the mouth and screamed, "I'm going to dig out your JUGULAR! I'll do it! I'll kill you!"

Of course, I felt I had to take the opportunity to turn this into what we call a "teachable moment" and point out the obvious while Ethan screamed and wriggled on the floor. "Do you know how long it would take you to, and I quote, dig out someone's jugular... with A THUMBTACK?"


"Get him to timeout," I said, shaking my head. Kill somebody with a thumbtack. What is wrong with these children?

Later while filling out the incident report, I sat in my room mumbling to myself. "How did you positively correct the target behavior... How did I positively correct the target behavior? I positively corrected HIS FACE into the CARPET!" ARGH!

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