So, as some know, I have a few names: Syrie, Sy, SuperSy, Super Syrie, Silly Syrie, Stern Syrie, and the latest…Sy the Utensil Guy. I’m not exactly sure how/when this began, but it is my newest hat. Kids have learned that I have a stash of plastic utensils, and at all times of the day, they come to me seeking spoons and forks. It generally begins with Carissa’s daily diet of mac and cheese during second period, and from there I get a number of visitors over the course of the day interested in my cheap cutlery. At first it was only my students; then it became my students asking for their friends, and now on a semi-regular basis, it’s kids I don’t even know. But familiar or not, I fork over the forks.
So, what’s the deal? Why the new hat now? Well, for one, kids are hungry. And, for better or worse, I allow them to eat in room 219. And while some of my colleagues can’t even imagine letting kids eat during class, for me it’s a necessary no-brainer. Let ’em eat. Let ’em be people. This is part of the equation.
Recently, the cafeteria announced that it would no longer provide utensils to students who were not eating school lunch. However, for 25 cents, they could purchase a “spork.” This is the second part of the equation. But, I am not blaming the school; it’s simple economics in a world where funds are finite. I get it. It makes sense. But it does not change the fact that kids need things. Yes, they could–probably should–bring their own from home, but they are kids, and I have a soft spot for the little stinkers, even those I don’t know. And so, when I can, I give them what they need: pencils, pens, paper, notebooks, books, and sometimes, when I can spare it, food. I gave Steph a banana yesterday. How can I ask her to give her all if all that she’s thinking about is food? I had it. I gave it. Simple stuff.
So, by now, I am getting used to my new hat. Of course, my stash has drastically diminished in recent weeks, and what I thought would last me all year, will be gone in a week or so, but as I tell the kids, I am crazy rich. I am a teacher. They pay me stupid amounts of money. Buying them forks is the least I can do. #therichlife #pocketssodeep
Happy Thursday, all.
- End of the Day: Morning Minutes, February 24, 2016.
- Head Above Water: Morning Minutes, February 26, 2016