It's no big secret that I've never been a fan of kids.
You might be asking yourself, why would a self-admitted child-hater take a job teaching the 7-14 age bracket. Well, I don't have a good excuse for my stupid actions, but I do know that if you hate children, you are occasionally surprised by a great show of character. A short anecdote, if you will.
Today, in 8th grade, I was teaching a few weather terms, and I got to hail. Now, you know I can't really speak Korean too well, so if I need to explain what a word means, it usually takes a lot of effort, or a picture or something, but this gets pretty difficult sometimes. (Example: How do you illustrate "independence"?)
Anyway, hail. Students, what is hail? Students: Uhh...
Ok, ok. I will show you. So I take a piece of chalk and break it into as many pieces as I can. Then, I select the "target student" and toss a handful at him.
I knew it was coming, too. I was pretty much asking for it; I just didn't know in what manner the student's vengeance would be enacted. But as soon as I turned my back, a piece of chalk went sailing through the air and hit the chalkboard. I stopped in my tracks, put on my best "oh my god" face and turned around. Then I smiled. "You missed." Laughs all around. No big deal right?
At the end of class, this kid (whose name I unfortunately do not know, and is a great character flaw on my part) came up to me and said "I'm sorry." At first, I honestly had no idea what the hell he was talking about. Until he said "chalk" and mimed a throw.
I wouldn't even think about apologizing for something like that in my younger years. Especially if the throw didn't even connect. Especially if the teacher wasn't even mad. Especially if I knew I could get away with it.
I know they're not "my students" and that I only see them, at most, two times a week, and I know that I hate them because they are little and cute and not rational, but I couldn't help but feel a little proud today.