Monthly Archives: April 2012

After Edward Scissorhands comes…Tim Binhead

I’d always suspected from an early age that if ever a bin landed on my head I would have a glut of quick fire gags at my disposal. At the very least a play on the word “I’ve been (bin)”… but no, when it finally happened all I could think was “a bin just landed on my head”.

Why a bin had been balanced precariously on top of a collapsible table is anyone guess but it followed just moments after I’d dropped my water-bottle lid down the toilet (again, no gags at the ready ).  The persistent rain was ruining the kids’ day too. Our collective attempt at the opposite of a rain dance having failed dismally.

With little in the way of entertainment during wet play I found jobs, jobs and more jobs for my very willing class. By the 30th child I was struggling so I gave him the role of ‘doorman’. His job was to stand by the door and ask everyone coming in their age. If they were between 6 and 7 they could come in. “Oh and no trainers” I mentioned as an aside.

When the rain cleared the children ran into the playground like wailing banshees.  Still, some were keen to help. Through the medium of telling the time I gave them different things to do “3 o’clock two children fighting” “6 o’clock child has just face planted” or “12 o’clock, child over there acting just plain weird”.

To kill the last 5 minutes of the day one child spontaneously created a story which somehow transfixed the class. I’m always staggered by how even the smartest of kids will sit and listen intently to any story they’re told. I find myself looking at them in a disbelieving way, staggered that they don’t ever interject and say the child equivalent of “hang on, this is absolute bollocks!”.

The most perplexing thing though was to discover a trail of shit in the classroom. How could a child in a concreted playground have managed to bring this in? My olfactory senses are not developed enough to have ascertained if it were human or animal. Did the child take a dump on their shoe and walk it in as some sort of ‘dirty protest’? And is that anymore ridiculous an idea than a bin landing on someone’s head?

Huh?

Just as the kids seem to be growing daily so too am I, incrementally, as a teacher.  A measure of this is the general lack of a lack of disorganisation. This is the kind that used to leave me a gibbering, slobbering basket case on my journeys home last year.  At least it guaranteed a carriage to myself.

I’m not slick and never will be, slick teachers are those that have too many teddy bears in their bedroom, but I’m at least more ‘on it’.  With continuous torrential rain, the advent of wet play turned the mild-mannered class into rabid dogs. It’s at times like this I wish I walked around with a hula hoop just to keep the mob at bay.

The worst offender of climbing the walls was one child who I discovered has been given traces of red bull in his water. Now clause 5, sub-section d of the law of teaching clearly states “thou shalt step in if a child is consuming a product that could give him “wings”.

On the other hand, he’s stopped looking at me with a permanently confused face. I no longer feel the need to move him back a few rows, as it was getting disconcerting and his concentration has improved. It’s a win-win, so his secret is safe with me.

The kids excelled themselves with their ridiculousness. One child approached me and looked as if he was attempting an Elvis Presley lip curl. “It hurts when I do this” he moaned. “Don’t do it?” I suggested. Problem solved, but that was one of the easier ones.

Another child got his hand stuck in a playground drain. We managed to remove it before any tabloids got sniff of it and christened him “Drain Boy”.  One poor girl turned up looking like the Toxic Avenger after her parents had used carpet cleaner and she’d rolled on it. The reaction was bad enough that I’ve since received word she can’t go out in daylight.  Is this how superheroes are formed?

When the rain subsided they ran screaming into the playground. I don’t have my finger on the pulse of the games children play these days. The ‘water hazard masks’, ‘fleabag monkey face’, ‘Oggy and the cockroaches’ and ‘The unruly midget pigs’ all sound like death metal bands but they’re in fact all games that my class play. I only intervene if the games are ‘Burn stuff’ or ‘Lynch the teacher.’

To end the day I read in one boy’s homework that for dinner he consumed “sausages, onion rice, ketchup, nine chicken wings, fried peas, two eggs, two hash browns, nutella on toast, grapes and orange juice.” He then settled down to watch his favourite show ‘Man versus Food’. Boy versus food is clearly no contest.