Friday, December 02, 2005

No Means No

TGIF since it’s time for a couple days off, as class was pretty unsatisfying today. The same students who always disturb class were just as trying today, and the handful that work hard each day persevered despite the turmoil. While working to finish her pen pal letter, Maribel asked me how to say, “Soy güera, delgada y alta.” She couldn’t hear my answer, however, with students whistling, making noises that sound like animals and talking. I had to sit down next to her so she could hear me say, “I’m light-skinned, skinny and tall.”

As the students entered the room, Luis pushed Thalia – not very smart, since just yesterday I didn’t let him into class after he couldn’t behave or follow the initial instructions I give in the hallway. So today, I called Luis back out to the hallway to let him know that his pushing was unacceptable and that he already had one strike. Within a couple of minutes, he was pushing Vicki’s desk forward with his feet. And, not long after that, he was doing it again and I sent Vicki to find a “prefecto”.

When the “prefecta” arrived, Luis began pleading with me for another chance. He swore to me that he’d be good, if I just let him stay. He has had a hard time with impulse control so many times before that I can’t allow him to stay, he seemingly can’t seem to stop his bothersome behavior. The purpose of “three strikes and you’re out” is so that the students do have warning before they have to leave the classroom. Many of the students have learned that pleading with me doesn’t make a difference; when I say “no” it means “no” and I don’t change my mind.