switching roles

Yesterday was a particularly rough day, and one of my students picked up on my bad mood and remarked, "Ms. Parton, you need to chill out." I sighed and said, "I know, but you should try being in my shoes for a day - then you might understand my frustration." He perked up and said, "I'll teach class tomorrow!"

I don't think he ever imagined that I'd agree to it.

When I told him I thought that was an excellent idea, he grew slightly wary. I told him I would even be a student, and he could be my teacher as well. I told him during his period, he could even call me "Rachel." The only things he would not be allowed to do were anything involving other students' grades and swearing at students. He was extremely excited about the chance to boss me around, until I said, "Yep! I'll be just like every other student tomorrow!" Apparently he reflected upon his classmates behavior, because toward the end of the day, he came running into my class to tell me he didn't want to do it anymore. I smiled and reassured him that he would do a great job, which seemed to pacify him.

This morning, I packed my Detroit Tigers baseball cap, in the event that he actually wanted to go through with it. We had an awards ceremony during 2nd period, and I caught him by the door before he slipped out. I asked him where he was going, and he answered, "Man, I was gonna go home, cuz next period is about to be hectic!" I smiled and reassured him that he would do a great job, which seemed again to pacify him.

As third period started, I wrote on the board, "Guest Teacher - Mr. ________" just as my man walked through the door. He laughed and rolled his eyes, but was quick to put his jacket on the back of my chair and take a seat at my desk. I ran out the door to the bathroom and put on my baseball cap, and returned with quite the swagger, pausing to stand in the door and talk to the teacher next door for awhile, telling her exactly what was going on in my classroom. There was some confusion when I entered the classroom, students asking me, "Ms. Parton, are we doing work today?" My response? "Ask your teacher?" He came over to me and said, "Rachel, there are no hats allowed in school." To which I replied, "Man, everyone wears their hat! I'm grown! " By this time, my students had picked up on what was happening, and most of them were in stitches. Meanwhile, my poor student was trying to pass out our Raisin in the Sun reading packets and get the reading started, to no avail. I noticed that two of my males in the back had taken out a pack of cards, so I joined them at the back table and told them to teach me the game they were playing. At this point, my already worn out man plopped into the seat beside me and announced, "I quit." I laughed and gave him a hard time, took off my hat and ordered the gentlemen to put the cards away. Class resumed rather smoothly after that point, I must say.
I'm only disappointed that he didn't last long enough for me to take out my cell phone and call Doug in the middle of class...


  1. This is my favorite post to date. You amaze me. I LOVE IT!!! HA!! Oh, I wish you had it on tape. Better yet, I wish I was there to rebel rouse with you. Oh, this is too good...

  2. I love you!


  3. I love it! Again, wishing I could be a fly on the wall in your classroom. Wonderful. :)

    P.S. Aaron Neville will not be making my list of favorite things as his very name sends shivers up my spine. :)

  4. rachel, i found your blog bc lynz gave me manda's blog to see pics of linc. this probably makes me an official internet stalker, but i think your blog is awesome! it's SO fun to read your stories; i'm inspired by your creativity and willingness to learn along with your students. keep up the good work :)