To life!

“You’ll have fun” is a Bad Sign

Posted on: May 26, 2010

Do not fear to sub in a special education class, and I don’t mean a high school Learning Disability class. Being learning disabled in high school is high fashion these days. Now, some teens are learning impaired, I’m sure, but since every teenager in my neighborhood is in an LD class, I have to wonder if it is not because they want to get out of doing too much work. 

In the elementary school though, I have enjoyed teaching special education.  By far, the most interesting was an autism class.  The teacher was there actually, but I accepted a job as an instructional assistant because the voice on the phone assured me that these were really sweet kids.

The classroom was painted orange, yellow and red, like Chuckee Cheese, with so many exciting things to do.  The teacher, a pretty young thing with bright eyes, promised me that we would have fun. Always take it as a bad sign when a teacher tells you that you are going to have fun. And I was not much consoled when she apologized for not telling me to wear pants instead of a dress.  “Emilio likes to look under ladies’ skirts”, she said.  This was troubling indeed.  I spent all day with one eye on Emilio and my legs pressed tightly together.  But the teacher was so good with them that I was inspired.  If I wanted to go back to school, I would specialize in autism.

Oh, before I forget, learn to keep a straight face when a kid has an accident. Emilio  wet his pants but couldn’t tell me, so he peeled off his underwear in front of everyone and proceeded to whip his ding-a-ling-ling, as though it had failed him. Naturally, I had to shield him from the eyes of the over-curious girls and get him a change of clothing. 

It is a little more delicate when a child has a bowel movement.  You are not supposed to change his underwear; you just walk him carefully to the school nurse. A note of caution: keep him from bouncing up and down, as kids tend to forget what load they are carrying. Believe me; if you don’t, you’ll regret it.  And if you should have to call a parent, beware, especially when talking to someone whose English is not fluent.  Explain what you mean by “accident”, or you will be confronted by a very angry parent who thinks his child is bleeding on the asphalt.

Most of all, enjoy the children.  Love them, and, if you are starving for affection, they will give it back to you ten-fold, and you can eat it up


9 Responses to "“You’ll have fun” is a Bad Sign"

Wonderful article. Very funny!

This made me laugh out loud but at the same time was so touching! I really enjoy when writing can carry that delicate balance…thank you for this read 🙂

Awww, thanks, Rom! I always forget to hit the reply button to the message 🙂

Awww, thank you! It makes me feel good that another person is touched. They really get to you, those little devils.

Wow, I didn’t know enrolling in ‘learning disabled’ classes was becoming a fad. That’s rather a shame, if they are able to challenge themselves elsewhere…

– Corra

the victorian heroine

I know! Thanks, Corra.

Great post, Bisi! Really keeps things in perspective. Enjoyed the read. Best … Cat

Thanks a lot, Cat! Hope all is well with you.

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