The local school district was in need of substitute teachers and I was fresh meat.
“She has a degree….does not work….no kids…teaching experience is limited to Sunday School and preschool. Oh, she sounds like the Mary Poppins of education!” Did I mention they were desperate?
My Friends said, “It is a fun way to spend a few hours when the coaches have to leave class early to travel with the teams.”
Sure, I was game. My first class was High School Algebra for the football coach. One hour. Gave out some candy–watched kids leap over desks to get to the candy that I threw at them like wild animals–the bell rang. No Problem!
My second Assignment: Elementary Music Teacher. I loved music class as a kid. This sounds good….well, sounds good is not the best phrase for me and music–my middle school choir teacher suggested that I save her and my time–no need to try out for solos anymore. I was pumped! She really thinks I am that good? Not exactly.
“Sweet heart, I will just give you the extra credit no need for you to try out this time.” I thought I had the part..then I saw the list of soloists. My name was omitted by mistake…Mrs. Travers must have made a mistake…I already told everyone that I scored my first solo.
She did not make a mistake and Mrs. Travers gave me the extra credit reserved for students who did try out for solos so I guess it was a win-win. For the rest of middle school I put my name on the solo tryout sheet and somehow the extra credit was always assigned to my name–Weird.
But I digress….
It was my turn to be a gracious Music teacher for one day.
The first student quietly entered the door….slowly the noise level escalated as word echoed through the line….substitute…substiTUTE…subSTITUTE..
The hushed excitement continued, “Who is she? Is she new? This is GREAT!”
I was seated at the teacher’s desk double checking the lesson plans when it occurred
Excuse me Teacher?
What in the…..No he did not….
I kept my composure and calmly spoke:
Young Man why did you hit me on top of the head?
(It was not a painful hit more of a solid good-natured thud but hitting is not allowed in school if I remember correctly. His reasoning made me think twice before sending him to the principal.)
I hit you because you are my size.
For the record–some of the kids were my size but this young man was a half pint and his reasoning was a kind compliment to this newly wed–who put on twenty pounds her first six months of marriage–but no! You can not sweet talk this substitute–off to the principal’s office.
Boy did I feel like mean ol’ school marm when the smallest boy in the class looked at me with big tears in his eyes…I almost wavered. Maybe that is why I stole an ITunes Gift Card from a young school boy years later…huh?