19. Cougars, baby!
Awkward story: my students are all between 8 and 10 and a few have noticeably hit the point where they are obviously starting to notice the opposite sex.
I have two students that I’ll give fake names: a boy, James, and a girl, Lucy, in my class. They are always together: recess, lunch time, free choice, the two are always working together. They are both very shy and giggly and it seemed a mutual crush was there, noted by me and their math teacher as well.
One day, I hear James getting teased by some other kids for his crush on Lucy. His math teacher and I pull him aside and have a talk with him. We tell him that we’ll be talking with the class as a whole about crushes and teasing (he’s not the only one). His math teacher also tells him that, if he does have a crush on Lucy, it’s nothing to be embarrassed about because she’s a nice, sweet girl. James just looks awkward and asks to go so we let him.
A few days later, I’m walking my kids out to the parent pick up and I see Lucy’s dad is here to pick her up. James waves to both of them as they leave and I ask if he’s been over to Lucy’s house to play and if he knows her dad.
“Yea, miss. That’s my uncle.”
OH SHIT. I HAVE ENCOURAGED COUSIN INCEST.
I awkwardly gather my nerves and start to say, “Ah, you remember that talk we had about Lucy and liking her? Ah well, I didn’t realize she was your cousin so-”
“I thought you didn’t. That was weird, miss.” Then he just laughed and said he liked a different girl anyway from his older sisters class.
Miguel asked me (his AP Chem teacher) if he could write a message on the board for Mariela. Miguel was a former AP student and at that time a Senior. Mariela was a current AP student and at the time a Junior. Miguel, using elements from the periodic table, asked Mariela to go to the Senior Banquet; the biggest to-do at our school. And then Miguel asked if I would record it on my phone while he asks her. I said sure thing and I was glad to help – both were great people and good students.
Miguel, during class, goes into this big long show asking Mariela. After he’s done, Mariela stands up, looks straight at the phone and says, “No.” She then sat back down. Before this started I thought there was no way Miguel would endure public humiliation unless he knew for sure Mariela would say yes. As soon as she said No there was nothing but silence. Miguel literally dropped his head and slinked out of the room. Mariela didn’t flinch.
I die laughing every time I watch that video. Greatest moment of my teaching career.