Every teacher has at least one story about a student they’ll never forget. From little monsters to adorable sweethearts to the kids who said WAY too much, read on for the craziest tales teachers could muster up about their most memorable students.
1. When The Kids Are Asleep
A second or third-grade student was always tired and falling asleep in the class. The teacher asked her what the problem was, and the kid said that her parents were really noisy with each other after she went to bed, and it kept her up. She had to explain to the child gently and patiently, “Your parents are busy looking after you when you’re awake, so if they want to play or have fun they have to wait until after you go to bed.”
The kid must have told her parents what she had learned, because the teacher said that in the next parent-teacher interview, the mother was beet-red from embarrassment in the meeting.
2. That Hurts!
I used to do science programming for kids. In the middle of a library summer reading program, I picked a little girl, probably about 4-5 years old, to come up and be my volunteer for a magic trick, which then you explained the science of after it was done. I asked what her name was. She said it into the mic with zero shyness in front of approximately 200 kids and adults.
I asked if she had ever heard of the “trick” we were going to do and she said, “Nope! My favorite dinosaur is a triceratops! And I like your shoes! My dad is back there. HI, DAD! But, my mom couldn’t come tonight because she got a shot in her bottom and can’t sit on the hard chairs this place has.” The audience couldn’t stop laughing.
3. My Way Or The Highway
I had a student who was an absolute terror. He bullied the other students and constantly disrupted lessons. His mother was just as bad. She would routinely stop by to “visit” my classroom and would sit there and give me the stank eye. Then she would go to the principal with made-up stories of my inability to teach and/or my bias against her son.
She would call meetings with district-level administrators and rail against me for hours. One day, I was asking my students if they could write down their addresses for a class project we were doing. “The Terror” gave me an address that is different from the one we had on record. In fact, the address was in the next town 15 miles away. What he didn’t know was, he’d just revealed his mother’s secret.
He and his mother had moved nine months earlier but had neglected to register in their new school district (as is required). I notified my principal and the next day “The Terror” was gone. The icing on the cake was that Terror Mom was sued by our school district for the loss of funds during that 9-month period.
We were talking about calling for help and what a real emergency is. This is tricky with 10-year-olds because you want to use real emergency examples but not freak them out either. One kid came up with a good question when she asked, “So, if your mom gives birth in the kitchen, that’s an emergency, right?” Sure enough, mom picked him up with his baby brother who was born last week in their kitchen.
5. Family Planning
Zoom school has made some of our classroom parents all too aware of what their kindergarteners are telling us. One child said she was going to have a baby brother, then another volunteered that she wanted a baby brother but would probably never get one because her mom said she didn’t want to have another kid ever again. Her dad was in the background doing something else but turned toward the camera when he heard that and locked eyes with me all red-faced and wide-eyed.
6. First-Grade Justice
Last year, I had a 7-year-old in my class who was just a pain. He would throw things around the classroom, pinch other children, poke them with pencils, and he was rude to everyone but would always blame it on someone else. Talking to his parents wouldn’t help because they believed everything their little “angel” said.
One break time, he was harassing another child, and I guess they just had enough. This usually mild-mannered child punched him in the stomach. It was so hard, the horrible child even wet himself. Then, all of the other children who witnessed it completely closed ranks and denied that it ever happened. We couldn’t follow it up.
7. We Need to Talk About Kevin
I taught a dissection lab section back in college. I had one kid in a section, Kevin, who never listened to instructions and just dove in with a scalpel, dicing and chopping and generally causing a horrific scene. This led to his first karmic warning when we were dissecting squid. He got squid “juice” on himself, and it smelled awful for the rest of that class. But he didn’t learn.
He kept on ignoring instructions and hacking away, so this time karmic justice struck on our very last dissection project: The fetal pig. Kevin really wanted to see the pig’s brain. Kevin couldn’t get through the skull, though, so he started whacking away at it. I told him to stop, but he had to give it one last, mighty thwack. Crack!
The skull breaks and rubbery piglet brain bits come flying out everywhere, mostly over Kevin. Unfortunately, while he was protesting my clear instructions, Kevin had his mouth open. Thankfully, preserved pig brain, ingested orally, seemed to have a calming, subduing effect on Kevin for the last couple classes.
8. What’s Mine Is Yours
My daughter’s kindergarten teacher told me about how one child entertained them at Show and Tell by being extra generous and welcoming. When it was their turn, they regaled the whole class with a complete report on the new alarm system in their house. This was a report, of course, including the code and where the keypad was located behind the curtains!
9. Not Going Very Far
When I was teaching ESL, I once had a kid who thought he was all that. Sporty, relatively bright, and quite popular with his boy classmates, but went out of his way to annoy the girls. He was constantly taking pencils, copying work, messing up their hair, etc. He clearly just didn’t know how to interact with females.
One day, he broke his leg and had to be on crutches for a while. As soon as I announced it was break time, the girl next to him took both crutches and ran away with them. Snacks got dealt out one-by-one, so kids weren’t allowed to fetch for their friends. His friends all abandoned him for choco-pies, and he was left sitting, immobile and alone.
10. Skimming It
I had an eighth-grade student whose father ran for—and won—the local political office. It was either the city council or something like that, I don’t remember exactly. We were talking about elections in the class, and she raised her hand and mentioned that her dad won his recent election. The problem was, she kept going—and said too much.
She added the gem “and he was accused of something called embezzlement, but he didn’t do that, he only used campaign money to pay for stuff for our family.” I wanted to tell her that uh, that’s what embezzlement is, but I didn’t say that. I just gave her a generic “very interesting thanks for sharing” and quickly moved on.
11. Liar, Liar, Recommendation’s on Fire
There was a compulsive liar of a kid who told me all sorts of doozies for four years. His senior year, he asked me to write a letter of recommendation. I did—because I had an ingenious plan. I included every lie I could remember him telling me as though it was the truth and I was pumping him up. Oh man, it was so good.
He couldn’t even show it to his family because I wrote about how he volunteers at homeless shelters every night, raises hundreds of rescue dogs to become service dogs, how he donates blood every week, etc. Any one of the statements was obviously impossible to be true. I hope he didn’t try to use it, but I never got a call from anyone to verify my recommendation.
12. That Famous Relative Story
I worked at a summer camp one year where campers were continuously coming in and out. I had this cute girl as one of my campers one day. She was very peppy and talkative. She told me all about how she got VERY expensive presents for her past birthdays from her uncle. Of course, I smiled and said, “Oh, that’s nice of your uncle.”
She then said, “Yep. He made a lot of money.” I went ahead and politely asked, “Oh? And what does he do for work?” She replied, “He’s a teacher… no, wait, that was just pretend. He acted as a teacher in a movie. You’ve probably seen him before.” I laughed a little and smiled at her and asked, “Oh yeah? What movie is he in?” I absolutely was not prepared for her answer:
She looked at me point blank and said “Harry Potter. My uncle is Professor Snape…or, he used to be before he passed…The cast was at the funeral. Emma Watson is really nice.” That day was such a haze, I barely remembered anything until I got home and remembered that interaction again and thought, “What in the world?”
I still can’t remember WHO I interacted with. Her dad picked her up but to this day I’m not sure who I met. I’m not sure if it was one of Alan Rickman’s brothers or a sibling of his wife, but it’s the closest I’ve come to meeting a celebrity.
13. Flying News
I was a kindergarten room mom and during the “what did you do over the summer” sharing, a little girl told the class the most horrifying story I’ve ever heard. She talked about how on her trip to Hawaii, her dad had ridden a motorcycle and lost control, and it went over a cliff and he didn’t make it. At pick-up time the teacher quietly said to the mom, “I’m so sorry about your husband.”
The mom simply rolled her eyes up to the heavens and said, “Oh geesh. What has she been saying?” It turns out that her husband was perfectly fine, and they hadn’t even left the town over the summer.
14. Really Dropped the Balls
I teach a high school elective course and I had a class with 23 boys and two girls. If you are a teacher, you know this is a nightmare. Teenage boys are definitely pack animals and are constantly in a struggle to establish their hierarchy. These guys were a constant ball of energy and were always doing stupid, stupid stuff.
They went through a phase where they “cup checked” each other. This went on for weeks. Someone would walk up to sharpen a pencil. BAM! Cup check! So, one day in class one student, Travis, asked to go to the restroom. I gave him the pass and sent him on his way. The rest of the class was quietly working when it happened.
Another boy in the back yelled out, “OH MY GOD! Travis just texted me a picture of his balls.” Now, I knew this could end up very badly if the administration dealt with it. So, I immediately got the kid to delete the text, calmed the riotous laughter, and somehow managed to get them all back on task. But I wasn’t done yet.
Travis wasn’t back yet and I definitely wasn’t going to let him smugly get away with this. I called his mom and told her that Travis had done something and he should explain his actions to her instead of me. In walks Travis with this proud grin on his face. He thinks he’s succeeded…until I casually look up from my desk and let him know his mom is on the phone.
There, in front of the entire class, he had to explain that he had just taken a picture of his “testicles” and sent it via text to his buddy in class. You could literally hear his mom screaming through the phone. Once he finished, I told her that I felt that she would best handle the situation and thanked her for her time. That day, I won.
15. That One Cousin
I was walking a new student to IT and they happily shared the story of his plump cousin who was wanted by the sheriff because he’s behind in his child support. The plump cousin is plump because he drinks energy drinks and not water. He also doesn’t pay child support because he doesn’t like kids. Said cousin also smells a bit like cheese and his feet have long toenails.
The student kept going along this line and saying things so on and so forth until we arrived at the IT office.
16. Chihuahua VS. English Mastiff
I teach middle school. We had one eighth grader who was the oldest, meanest kid in class. Put a girl up against the wall with his forearm across her throat so that her feet came off the ground. No other kids even stepped in because they didn’t want to get beat on too. He was suspended regularly and didn’t seem to care.
Then we got a transfer kid. This huge, and I mean huge, kid transfers in. He’s a tough kid, but quiet about it. Doesn’t do much academically, but he’s super respectful and is just kind of quiet. I’ve seen a lot of bar fights and this kid carried himself like that dude who knew he could take someone apart but had nothing to prove.
Well, jerk kid walks up to big kid in the hall one day and challenges him to a fight by screaming, “YOU WANNA GO?” up at him with his arms spread wide and his face forward. Big kid quietly says, “Yep,” drops his binder, and then drops jerk kid with the most beautiful jab I’ve ever seen outside of a boxing match.
Jerk goes down like a ton of bricks and big kid calmly picks up his stuff and heads to the office. Jerk gets expelled, the administration was looking for a reason, and big kid gets a suspension but is suddenly the most loved person in the building. The Vice Principal was actually giggling as he helped jerk kid stagger to the office.
17. No Show
During virtual learning, at a time of day where we would just give the kids a little time to talk to each other after lunch, one boy was telling another boy how his dad had hooked up his iPad to the TV so he could watch videos or something like that. These kids are kindergarteners. He said to the other boy, “Has your dad ever done that?”
That’s when the second boy spilled all the tea: “No. My dad definitely can’t do that. My dad never comes to pick me up. He never even watches me.” Now obviously this was terrible and such a heartbreaking thing to hear, but what was so amusing was just his innocence and candidness as a five-year-old kid. He just came right out and aired it all out.
And again, this was virtual learning, so this kid’s poor mother was in the background yelling “J*****!!! STOP IT!! DON’T SAY THAT!” She was horrified. It was sad to hear, but also so funny to hear him just be so straight up with it in front of a class of 25 kids and 2 teachers.
18. Picturing It
During my sophomore year of high school, I spent my study hall in the first-grade classroom to help out. And, one day for show and tell, a kid brought in a picture of her mom and uncle. This picture was a very…romantic picture and but was also wrinkled so it looked like it was, at least somewhat, hidden away. Now, this picture was also somewhat recent.
It turns out that the kid had found a picture of her mom’s affair. Her mom was wearing lingerie while her uncle was in his underwear. The teacher realized this and kept the picture hidden from the dad until the mom could pick it up.
19. Entitled to Proper Treatment
I had a student who was an entitled little jerk. Like, way more entitled than any of the teens I’ve taught. He thought he could cheat on a test, cuss out a teacher, be cruel to an intellectually disabled student, skip class, throw things at people, etc. Thing is, he could do all this because his mother thought he was perfect and never disciplined him.
She would then immediately try to turn it around on the teachers, saying how they’re always trying to get her child in trouble. Earlier this year, he made an awful remark to a girl classmate who was this nerdy, sweet honors student who would never hurt a fly. But it turns out he messed with the wrong person.
The girl’s boyfriend punched the kid right in the face and busted his nose. It was amazing. Even though I obviously had to discipline the boyfriend, I was secretly glad it happened.
20. Junkie Attitude
I had a 5th grader who was a know-it-all menace. He’d interrupt me and say, “Well actually Miiiiissssssssss…” and then state some random fact that was often wrong or irrelevant. Well, eventually while on lunch duty, I see that his lunch every day is a can of soda, a bag of chips, and tons of candy, like the bag is busting at the seams.
I alert the principal because I’m worried that his grandmother, who was raising him, wasn’t feeding him properly. The principal calls the grandma and grandma gets angry. She was letting him pack his own lunch and wasn’t checking it. So, she’s embarrassed that we’ve called her on it. She tells us that she will only pack healthy food now and tells us he can’t have ANY candy.
A week later, the kid is still being a little jerk and ticks off another student. In retaliation, the student runs to the principal and says that the kid has been sneaking candy to school every day. When the principal goes to talk to him, the kid shoves a chocolate bar into his mouth and the principal takes away the Blow Pop sucker he has.
This kid proceeds to roll around on his belly across the entire hallway, screeching and crying so hard that he’s choking on the half-chewed chocolate bar. That’s when a kindergarten student walks by and says, “You look like a baby.” The kid stops wallowing long enough to punch the little student. He got suspended, and I got a peaceful classroom.
21. Einstein’s Kryptonite
This one student had an ego so large it could barely fit into room. Sure, he was smart, always scored near perfect, and wanted to go to med school. But he would also do stuff like bring in articles about how one small minute detail was incorrectly taught in class. If he got one point off on a 99% exam, he brought in highlighted notes from the textbook.
Unfortunately, for all of his knowledge, he did not get into medical school. When he found out why, he was devastated. His guidance counselor followed up with one of the med school interviews he had, and the school emailed back and told them how much of a jerk the student had been throughout the entire meet up.
22. A Fair To Remember
I was discussing homophones with 3rd graders and we were considering the words fare/fair, what they mean, and how they’re spelled. I was sure we had exhausted all the meanings: fair weather, playing fair, bus or taxi fare, etc. I thought we had it covered, but no, Heather knew one more—and she accidentally shared her family’s darkest secret.
She said, “You know, ‘fair?’ When your mom has a ‘fair’ and your dad finds out and gets really mad about it?” I’m not often speechless, but that left me floundering for a moment!
23. One-Sided Stories
I had a kid, Ray, who was a real pain when I taught 5th grade. Ray had one of those moms who refused to hold him accountable for anything. It was always, some other kid did it, Ray was just protecting himself, Also, she was one of those moms who would ask Ray if he was guilty, and take his “No” as incontestable truth.
I had a full caseload as a special ed teacher, so I got a helper named Steve. Ray HATED Steve. One day, Ray gets in trouble coming back from recess, and Steve reprimands him verbally. By the time Ray makes it to the classroom, he’s saying how Steve got in his face and shouted at him, even though nope, not what happened.
He asks to go talk to the principal—yay, Ray’s gone for at least five minutes! He tells the principal how Steve grabbed his arm. When Mom comes and gets him, he’s saying Steve pushed him. The next day, we get a phone call. Ray’s mom and grandma are coming in and want a meeting with Steve and the principal to discuss how Steve choked Ray.
Steve’s freaking out. Other kids were there, but no adults, no cameras, how can he prove his innocence? I tell him, “Go to the meeting and before anybody says anything, have Ray share what happened.” Steve came back smiling. As soon as one story came out, everybody else was disagreeing, “Well Ray told me—,” “but Ray told ME—.” I would have loved to see the mom’s face as her kid was proven a liar in front of everyone.
24. That Animal Instinct
I used to have a small farm with the usual farm animals. I also went to schools and brought along animals and educated the various classes on animal care, etc. I always invited elementary school classes to come and take a tour of the farm. This would entertain the children. Every year the teachers took me up on the offer. At the time, I also had several animals up in the house, including a few squirrel monkeys.
One of them was really, really old and she had no teeth. A young boy in the second grade was laughing and playing with that older monkey while I talked to the class that surrounded the monkey cages. The old monkey was ‘gumming’ his finger and he couldn’t stop laughing. Finally, the little boy said, “Hey, Jacob, come here and let her bite you….it feels just like grandma!”
And, while showing them the possum I was bottle feeding back to health, a little boy said he had a bunch of them in his bedroom closet.
One day while I was teaching multi-step equations to seventh graders, a girl asked to speak to me outside. She had these huge brown eyes that were brimming with tears. I walked outside and she just started spilling her guts. She began telling me that her mother wasn’t in the country legally. Her older sister’s substance problem was jeopardizing her mother’s security as she was worried about her sister being in trouble, etc.
In addition to all this, her sister would threaten her mom if she didn’t give her money for keeping up her substance use. There was a myriad of family drama she kept running through. After a few minutes, she looked at me and said, “Ms. (my last name), do you want to hear the worst part of it all?” I said that I did. So, she went on.
“I’m still in love with Tristan. And you sat me next to him in our new seating chart and I can’t sit that close to someone I’m in love with when I know he hates me now.” Yes, I moved her seat away from Tristan. That was a few years ago and I am still in close contact with her. She and Tristan did fall out of love. They have luckily both been able to find others.
26. Bank Shot
I teach the first grade and had a boy who would not stop hitting kids with basketballs. He’d run up and pop the ball right at students. This kid seemed like he was trying to knock other children down, and he’d laugh really hard if he saw someone stumble or if they’d fall after they were hit by his basketball.
After talking with his parents, we told them we’d be taking the balls away from him until after spring break to see if his behavior improved. Well, after spring break was over it didn’t take that little jerk even five minutes before he stalked and shot that Spaulding special at this poor little girl, knocking her down.
She cried and pointed at him. As I got up and walked his way, he started to bolt. He ran out of the playground, past the sand pit, and on to the basketball court. He maintained eye contact with me, and before I could take another step, a stray ball from another game bounced off and hit that little jerk square in the face.
He went down like a sack of potatoes. Of course, I ran over to him and made sure he was okay (he’s a troublemaker, but he’s still a child) and called for the nurse since he was out cold. He woke up with me above him and started crying, saying he’d never do it again. He didn’t want to pick up another basketball the rest of the school year.
27. Santa’s In The House
A kid in one of my classes told me that they learned that Santa isn’t real, and in fact, it’s actually their parents eating the milk and cookies. But, as they said, “It’s not right they have to make the milk and cookies and eat it. They cook for me and I eat what they cook. So, I learned how to make cookies and also pour milk now!” So wholesome!
They told me they have a younger sibling, and they’re going to keep making milk and cookies for “Santa” until their sibling gets older, and then they’ll teach them how to do it too!
28. Baby Shark
I was often substituting a special needs class with about 6-7 boys about 8-10 years old. The days were normally lively but I always had everything under control. Then there was a new boy in the class. Their teacher had written me a note that said to keep a close eye on him at all times. He had black eyes like a shark. He never showed any emotion whatsoever excluding immense excitement if someone else got hurt in any way.
Few days passed without any incidents and then, out of the blue, he stands up in the middle of class, yanks the much smaller guy sitting in front of him down with his chair from behind, and starts to pummel him in the face with his fists. I ran to intervene and ordered another student to get the principal. The attacker stood in the corner, emotionless and completely calm.
I turned to check out the crying kid on the floor and miraculously he seemed unharmed but was just shaken up by the surprise attack. I sat down on the floor to calm him down and to help him up. Next thing I know is the shark-eye kid standing beside me and stabbing me on the leg with my teacher scissors (the only pointy ones in the classroom).
It was then when I realized why the attacked kid wasn’t badly hurt. Shark-eye was big for his age but he had no physical strength at all. I didn’t even get a bruise from his stab; my trusty Lee’s jeans stopped the blade which I instantly took from him. I threw the scissors on top of a high shelf and ordered everyone else out of the classroom to wait for the principal’s arrival while I watched over Shark-eye. Boys ran out, Shark-eye looked at me curiously for a few seconds, then sat down at his desk and continued his math assignments like nothing had happened.
I asked him quite sternly what had made him attack a fellow student. Shark-eye lifted his empty gaze and said, “I heard him laughing at the school cafeteria. I thought he could have been laughing at me. Lorindól, can we play football today in PE class?”
The boy had no empathy nor remorse. The episode meant absolutely nothing to him. When the principal arrived, we went through the situation and the class affirmed my description or events as they had happened. Shark-eyes’ mom picked him up early and he stayed at home for a few days. The principal told me that this was not the first such incident and that the boy was on a wait list for a hospital school class. The principal commended me for my actions (I was very young at the time) and was surprised that I had been able to keep my cool even after getting stabbed even if the attempt had been pitiful.
Turned out that’s my teacher superpower. I never lose it. Even when I’ve been spit at, got chairs thrown at me, someone trying to gouge my eyes out while holding them (more than once) etc. Luckily the years in the same school have accumulated my reputation and nowadays it’s very rare that someone even dares to try to mess with me.
This incident was nearly 20 years ago but I’ll never forget it.
29. Lack of Honors
There was a clique of “popular” kids who were often jerks and acted out in our school. Our city had a living center for the mentally ill that also had a public swimming pool, so we used it for swimming lessons. Well, one day there’s a 14-year-old on the extreme end of the spectrum at the pool who had very limited functioning.
This popular “funny” student decides that it’ll be hilarious to sit there and growl at the boy aggressively like a hostile dog. The kid loses it and he freaks right out. His support worker figures out what happened, and the “funny” guy is banned from the center. He also automatically fails not only the module, but the entire gym course. He does not graduate on time.
30. Keep It in Your Pants
I had this one student who kept intentionally farting. After telling him repeatedly to knock it off, I finally lost my cool and said, “Next time you do that, I hope you poop yourself.” Not five minutes later, I see him lifting his butt with that stupid grin on his face. Within seconds, the grin turned to pure terror.
He jumped up and said, “I gotta use the bathroom,” and waddled out of the room with a large, wet brown spot on the back of his jeans.
31. Painfully Enraging
A preschooler used to crawl under the lunch tables and jump off the furniture. One day in the lunch room, he got very angry for some unidentifiable reason. He stood rooted in one spot and screamed that he was NEVER MOVING. During this, he wanted to make a point so he stomped as viciously as he could.
He was wearing really flat-footed sandals on a hard floor, and must have hit the ground with a perfectly level foot. Meaning, it hurt like absolute heck. His face was like a cartoon. His mouth made an immediate upside U and he screamed like that guy on SpongeBob who yells, “My leg!!” It just felt like justice to me.
32. What a Scathead
Park ranger here. We do this “urban education initiative” with inner city kids out to a wetland. There was this one kid, Pablo, who was this third-grade classroom’s “funny guy.” For example, during a live animal demonstration, he asks about its nipples and then repeats the word nipple louder so everyone could laugh.
While we’re walking, we talk about animal poop the whole time and of course, I was professional and answered the questions because I begrudgingly know a lot about scat. Pablo would barge into every learning opportunity for the other kids and take everybody out of the moment. It was actually really awful.
Every time I got the kids excited about nature, he would do some lame peer pressure so the vibe was, “No, nature sucks.” I wanted to push him into some briars pretty badly. Well, justice came swiftly when I was explaining poison ivy to half the group. He swaggers over and does some kind of, “These leaves? MINE!” prank.
I wanted to tell him it was poison ivy but instead, I told him to put it down. The other kids were like, “Drop it!” Only the reverse psychology made him caress the leaves even more, so I finally had to tell him what they were before he touched his face. Pablo then cried. His cool guy persona was shattered, and everybody listened to me for the rest of the field trip.
33. Die-Hard Follower
I had a 7th grade kid last year that needed to be institutionalized. He would fixate on a girl in his class, follow her everywhere, and wait for her outside of class. She reported to us that he would sneak up behind her and just breathe or whisper horrible things like threatening her or her friends and family. He even threatened to kill her rabbit. When her friends told him to stop, he would threaten them as well and imply that any resulting injury would be the first girl’s fault for not bending to his attention.
This is a public school so he was listed as a disabled student; we’re not allowed to expel students with disabilities in our state. Mom insisted that we were lying, nothing was wrong, her kid was a saint, and refused to institutionalize him. It got so bad for the little girl he was harassing that she had to be escorted to and from every class.
I caught him hanging around outside my class a few times waiting for her. He was wickedly sneaky; would ask to go to the bathroom ten minutes before the passing period of a completely different core and would wait around. I would tell him to get his butt back to class or he’d be spending the rest of the day in the office for truancy.
He was very good at never getting caught. We documented everything we could but he was clever enough to never say anything in front of a teacher. The reports were too frequent and from too many kids for us to ignore them. Eventually the little girl changed schools (we kept in touch with her and she was much happier at her new school) but freako kid is still in our school. He remained creepy and abusive all the way until he graduated. No attempts of getting him help at school or at home helped.
I just know I’m going to see his name on the FBI most wanted list someday.
34. You’ll Never Leave Me
So, I am not entirely sure if this is sociopath or psychopath but I had a child that was creepily into my pregnancy for the first 7 months. He wanted to name her, talked to my belly, etc. Then one day it clicked that I would leave and he got really close to me and whispered, “When you come out, I’m going to kill you with a hammer. I hate you.”
I was shocked so I took him with me to the office. The school psychologist asked why he said that. He replied that, “It will take her away. I want it to die so she stays here.” He was on a lot of medication for his incredibly violent tendencies. He had tried to kill his sister before by pushing her in front of a bus. His mother kept him locked in his room at night because she had found him standing over her with a knife.
The child was a ten-year-old boy. His mother agreed to have him committed after he attempted to kill a K-9 unit dog using a pair of scissors. MHMR and CPS were both involved. I haven’t seen or heard from the family since I left the district.
35. Zero Tolerance
It was the very end of the year and I had a student who was failing my class but didn’t even bother to try to get help until the last day. Oh, and she failed because she never showed up for class, ever. Like, I didn’t recognize her. She came to me and told me, “You’re the only class I’m failing and if I don’t get a D, I won’t graduate.”
I went to check the school grade book to see if this was true and I said, “Hmm, according to this, you have a 13% in Math and an incomplete in Chemistry.” She denied it vehemently, saying that she’d already talked to those teachers and I was the last holdout. Well, I knew just how to get her. I asked, “Why don’t we give your math teacher a call ?”
I dialed the extension for her math teacher. I tell him the story and that I’ve found her 13% in Math in the gradebook. The teacher’s response astonished me. He goes, “Actually, the grade in the book is incorrect. I just discovered the one piece of homework she did turn in was actually a photo copy of another student’s work. She now has a zero.” She did not graduate.
36. Hear The Music
I had a girl stay for some help after school one day. At the time I was teaching geometry to the 10th grade in a mostly Hispanic school. She told me about growing up in Peru until about the age of 10 or so. She was telling me that she worked with her uncle sometimes on the weekend. I asked what kind of work they did—many of our kids worked construction with their families.
“He’s a clown…I’m his DJ.” That really gave me a smile.
37. Feeling Bubbly
I taught the son of a 2nd-grade teacher. He came in one weekend talking about drinking lots of “kid beer” over the weekend at his dad’s house. I had to mention it to his mother, of course. So, when his mom stopped by later and I mentioned the story to her. She simply shook her head and said, “It’s apple juice, I keep telling his dad to stop calling it kid beer!”
38. As Many Times Until You Get It
I coached middle school football. Some kids have come out of their shell by then, while others have not. Most of the early bloomers were jerks who existed to make life terrible for everybody. The team’s starting halfback was one of those jerks. He gave a defensive lineman trouble and since everybody thought he was cool, they did it right along with him.
This lineman was a big guy, but not aggressive or outgoing. The little running backs took their Napoleon complexes out on the big guy by running by him and shouting “Sissy!” every time he failed to stop them. Rather than fight back to make the play, he would just ignore it and line up and try again the next play.
Well, one day the whole thing just clicked for the big guy and he started making plays. It was a cool thing to see. When he really started getting into a groove, I started putting the jerk guy in front of him and watching him plant that guy in the ground with a thud every time. Except this was just the beginning.
Soon, bruised and beaten, the jerk halfback asked me, “How many times are you going to run this play?” And I responded, “One for every time you called him a sissy.”
39. Real-World Consequences
I teach college students to be teachers. My first year doing this, I had a student who was always late, turned in the bare minimum, and always had excuses. I told him he had to improve or he’d eventually get fired on the job. He kept coasting. His first teaching job? He got fired. I laughed, in the privacy of my office, and I’m not sorry.
40. In Your Own Words
I created a “homework excuse” form that the kids had to fill out if they didn’t have their homework done. One girl with an attitude problem filled out forms with a few with choice things like, “This class sux,” and “I had better things to do.” Well, her grade goes downhill and we have a parent-teacher conference.
The mom defends her daughter’s grade, saying the homework was too hard or not clear enough. So I show her the forms, as signed by her daughter. The daughter is completely stunned and embarrassed and so was the mom. I got an immediate apology from both of them, and all her other homework was done on time for the rest of the year.
41. Those Pesky Family Members
I did a placement once as a student in a reception class. The teacher asked the class a question about phonics and one little girl put her hand up eagerly. The conversation between the teacher and the said student went something like the following. It was quite enlightening, indeed, as the student talked on guilelessly.
The teacher asked, “Child’s name, can you tell your friends the answer?” The child promptly replied, “My mummy and daddy sleep in different beds. And, my mummy got cross at my brother because he was doing doughnuts in his car and had to pay money for being a silly sausage. And, then we went on holiday, and mummy said daddy is silly.”
42. Under The Skin
When I was teaching college-level introductory biology in grad school, the main lecturer told an anecdote. They said that one time one of his students came up to him after his heredity lecture and showed a simple Punnett square that she had doodled of her and her boyfriend’s blood phenotypes. She wanted to make sure she had done it right.
She wanted to be sure because if so, then it meant that her boyfriend wasn’t the father of her baby. The lecturer checked her work and awkwardly confirmed that she had, indeed, created the Punnett square right. She, apparently, stared at her notes quite sadly and murmured something about brief relationships during the period.
Supposedly the reason we don’t test blood types in class anymore, besides the obvious sanitary reasons, is that it wasn’t uncommon for kids to do Punnett squares on themselves and their parents and realize that something didn’t add up.
43. Smashing It!
My youngest son had just started school and the teacher was asking what their parents did for work. My son said, “My dad breaks into houses and smashes them up.” The teacher then rang my wife to ask if everything at home was ok. They, then, told my wife about my son’s comment. I had to clarify that, “No, son, your dad works in demolition. That’s all.” One year on and it still feels awkward going to his school.
44. What’d I Miss?
I used to always show up late for my 10th-grade science class. One day, we had a little chapter review quiz at the start of class, and naturally, I was a minute or two late. So, I walked over to my desk and the teacher put my quiz down. I looked at it, and my blood ran cold. It was all super complicated questions I was sure we’d never covered.
After about two minutes, I looked up to see how everyone else was doing on their quiz. Well, everybody was watching me. When I looked up, they all started laughing. The teacher had printed up a single fake quiz with super complicated biology questions just to mess with whatever kid ended up showing up last to the quiz.
45. A Good Grilling
I was always ten minutes early when coming into the virtual classroom. I had a student who, when they came early into the said virtual room, mentioned several days in a row making food on their Traeger grill. I was impressed, especially when they made bread in it! Then the kid mentioned that their oven is broke. I thought their dad was a true grill master for almost two weeks.
46. Playing With Fire
On a class field trip to the fire department, I once had a chronic blurter patiently raise her hand as the fireman went around and answered questions. While pointing at the fire pole, she shared with the entire group, including several parent volunteers, that her “Mommy and daddy have one of those in their bedroom.” She followed it up with the reassurance that she “isn’t allowed to play on it.”
47. Daddy’s Coming Home
When my son was in kindergarten, he told the teacher that he was thankful that Thanksgiving that his dad was coming home from the Marines. So, his teacher contacted my wife and asked if she wanted to set up some kind of a surprise where I would show up to their class. My wife was like, “Um, who do think has been picking him up from school every day?”
Now, mind you I was in the Army not the Marines and I had gotten out a few years before he was even born. So, why did he say this? When we asked him why, he told the teacher that he said he forgot.
48. Night Terror
My mom taught special ed and kids who failed the test which was a requirement to graduate. There were three brothers, who came from a bad home life. They all got in various troubles with the law, but she said the two oldest were just trying to survive and were genuinely good kids who were dealt a bad hand. The youngest however was super creepy.
The two oldest tried to keep him in line, but they were just kids too dealing with issues way beyond what they should have been. One night she was going to bed and her dog, given to her by my dad because she lived alone, wouldn’t leave the back door. He usually slept on the floor in her room, but this night he refused to leave this spot.
She assumed there was a deer or something outside and let him stay there, thinking nothing of it. The next morning, word spread fast that the youngest brother was bragging about how he was outside her house and watched her all night. Administration said they couldn’t do anything about it because it didn’t happen on school property. Obviously, she was freaked out.
Two days later, the kid was busted for attacking a woman at knife point. He got thrown behind bars and she never saw him again.
49. It Happened One Night
Once a super quiet tenth grader, whom I probably heard speaking only twice in the entire year, proclaimed that she was the product of a one-night stand. I was shocked that she spoke out in class and with what she said too. So, of course, I said, “What?” She went on to explain that her mom was under the influence at a bar and got impregnated in some guy’s car. After she stopped sharing all the family secrets, the entire class looked at me and I just said, “Thank you for sharing.”
Education programs do not prepare you for those moments.
50. An Unbelievable, Amazing Deal
This kid was a very strange seventh grader. In addition to not being able to sit still, which is true of most seventh graders, he lacked self-control in every respect. For example, in his midterm project that he emailed to me, he had written a detailed “creative story” that made me cringe and made my skin crawl across the floor.
On other projects, he never did his share of the work and then blamed his group mates. He turned in maybe two homework assignments for the entire year, but it was somehow never his fault. He was also mean to other kids all the time. I had to put up with this strange, annoying and inappropriate child for the entire school year.
On the very last day of school, this kid stole another kid’s iPad from his unlocked locker. He then pawned it off to another kid on the bus ride home…for $10. (This kid? Not that smart). So the buyer, who is also my student, came in bragging to me about this amazing deal he had gotten for an iPad. It was only $10!
Of course, I was suspicious, so I reported it to the administration. They quickly untangled the entire incident and expelled this kid from the school.
51. Not Very Prepared for a Prep Student
During my first semester of teaching, I was at a very wealthy school with a class of mostly entitled jerk boys. There was a group of four who were the absolute worst though. They never did their work, said disrespectful things to me, and were overall awful human beings whose parents never seemed to discipline them.
I often overheard them bragging about getting away with stuff like being drunk at football games or worse. Although I reported the conversations to the administration, nothing ever got done. They ended up getting detained for stealing a car, crashing it, and breaking into a clubhouse. Also, three out of the four failed my class. That was great karmic justice.
52. Dunkin School
My first year teaching high school, I had a 16-year-old student who would come to school out of his mind on stuff, flirt with girls all through class, and talk about me in Spanish to the other students, right in front of me. I knew sort of what he was saying, but didn’t have the classroom management chops or a strong enough grasp of Español to deal with it.
Four years later, he hands me my coffee at Dunkin Donuts on my way to school. We make eye contact briefly, he realizes who I am, his eyes dart to the floor, and he shuffles back to do Dunkin Donuts things. I felt a weird conflicted feeling of sadness and schadenfreude, if it’s possible for those two things to mix. I hope he’s making better decisions now.
53. Moving Houses
Last year, I had a quiet girl do a free write about moving to our school in which she described her parents and their best friends living nearby, then building houses in the same neighborhood. Bear in mind that my school is in a constantly growing suburb. Then she described how her mom moved into the best friend’s house next door and the wife moved in with her dad. Yep, they swapped spouses, in neighboring houses.
54. The (Almost) First Words
I worked in an inclusive preschool for a bit, and many of our students were either nonverbal or limited verbal. We brought in green limeade with snack one day, and one of the little boys, who could barely speak twenty words, shouted “IT’S A MARGARITA!” at the top of his lungs. It was the first full sentence he had ever said.
It was amazing, and we laughed so hard, and he loved it. His verbal abilities started rapidly increasing afterward. But we all knew what mommy did at home. If your limited verbal child can name a margarita, that means they’re seeing a LOT of margaritas.
55. Sending A Smile
I was a preschool photographer a few years ago. There was this one boy who came onto my set. He couldn’t have been more than four at the time. He said he “wanted to smile real good for Daddy, who crashed his motorcycle and went to Heaven.” I looked at the teacher and she said that it had happened a month or so prior to the day.
I had to fight so hard not to cry. He didn’t understand his dad wasn’t coming back because he was no more. I liked to use words other than “cheese” to get the kids to smile. For instance, I use words like bunny, puppy, kitty, etc. When it came time for this boy’s picture he said, “No, I wanna say Daddy!” This sweet boy gave the best smiles that day and was so full of silly, joyful energy.
Later, while waiting for his classmates to finish getting their pictures, I overheard him ask his teacher, “When is Daddy coming home? I miss him. When can I see Daddy?” It was a rough day after that.
56. Same Romance, A Different Box
As a room mom for school parties one of my favorites was a Valentine’s party of second graders. They all made a Valentine box at their homes for the other kids to drop their valentines into. One kid’s was obviously a repurposed case of drinks. She was happy to point this out when it was her turn to describe it. Two kids later, the girl mentions that her box isn’t a drink box. It is, in fact, the box from her mom’s “massager.” I still crack up thinking of that moment.
57. Supportive Parents
I had a student who told me that her mom wanted her to drop out of college. This poor kid was one of the brightest, and most inquisitive students I had ever met. She was so smart, so kind, and so warm. She said she wanted to be a teacher, because it would be a quick and easy degree, but I pushed her to do what she actually wanted, which was nursing, and she got into a very selective nursing program because she was just so crazy smart.
But in her second year, her mom told her they needed her to work to support the family. Her education was free, I and other teachers and counselors had worked to get her scholarships and need-based grants, but that apparently wasn’t good enough for her mom. We convinced her to stay on for the rest of the year, but I left that school a while ago and I have no idea what happened to her. I hope she kept with it, it makes me tear up to think if she didn’t.
58. Uncle’s Extended Stay
My sister works in a primary school in Wishaw, which is a pretty rough part of Scotland. Once, as usual after a weekend, she said to the children, “Good morning, children! How was everyone’s weekend?” A kid piped up, “Ma Uncle is staying wi us.” The teacher, of course, responded with something like, “Aw, that’s nice!” The kid wasn’t finished and completed their tidbit by saying, “Aye, he’s hidin fae the Polis!”
59. In the Bag
This awful kid grabbed a girl’s purse and started rifling through it one day. He then started yelling that she had a knife in her bag to try and get her in trouble. The teacher had the perfect reply. She just quipped, “And you taking her bag is why she has a knife in the first place” before giving the kid detention.
60. I’m Just A Kid And Life Is A Nightmare
Oh so many. A kid came in upset and we finally got out what the problem was—this mom told him that he caused her to miscarry. Another kid came to school acting off. By lunchtime, he finally told someone what happened the night before. The dad made him take off his clothes and tried to chase him with an electrical cord. The kid ran outside into the streets of Detroit, naked.
Thank God a nice older man found him, put a blanket on him, and took him to the authorities. Of course, CPS intervened. CPS was looking for a placement, the kid assumed he would stay with his aunt (dad’s sister) but learned that wasn’t possible because…that guy wasn’t his dad. The kid said something like, “My whole life is over.”
61. It’s Always The Quiet Ones
There was a pond near our classroom. When I was in 6th grade my classmate pushed my teacher’s son who’s about three years younger than us into the pond, then said classmate jumped into the pond and kept holding the kid’s head underwater. The janitor jumped in and helped the kid, and called our teacher. My classmate straight up said to our teacher that he just wanted to check if dead bodies really float.
I don’t know what punishment my classmate got but he continued being my classmate until graduation. Kinda shocking to be honest, since he was nice to everyone.
62. Just Laugh It Off
I had a student who had just moved to our school, third-grader. His first day he had this huge gash over his nose. I don’t know why but I just didn’t think much of it. A couple days later I asked him what had happened, and his answer was horrifying. He said that his mom’s boyfriend’s dad pinned him against a wall and whipped him with his belt. Then showed me marks on his back as well.
He kind of laughed it off and said, yeah, he’s mean. It took every ounce of me not to cry right then and there. I immediately went next door to get an adult to take over my class and ran to the principal. She called 9-1-1 and they had some kind of excuse why they wouldn’t be able to come right away. She demanded they be there today because she was NOT sending that boy home.
They did show up, they walked him home, and they watched as the boyfriend’s dad packed up and left. The boy was in third grade, had the dirtiest mouth, and was probably one of the funniest and sweetest kids I’d ever met. He did tell me that the man moved back to Samoa later that year (mom stayed with boyfriend so knew stuff about the man). He moved schools the next year though, so I don’t know how he’s doing now.
63. Cuffing It Up
This kid was, at the time, probably around only 9 years old. Her parents had their own bathroom and she had been poking around in there. Because, of course, kids do that kind of stuff. As she poked around, she found a pair of handcuffs. Because she was a child, she just assumed that it had to have something to do with her dad’s job.
When she thought back on this memory as a teenager, it immediately occurred to her that her father was not a cop, and he did not work security either.
64. Flexing It
One day the visiting yoga teacher came to a third-grade class I was covering. Once there, she then introduced herself to the class and went on to ask if anyone knew what yoga was. A little boy, innocent as can be, said, “Yes! I have seen my parents do it and I have to knock from now on because they like to do it naked!”
65. Her Lock Ran out
I had a kid who threw a lock at my head. Somehow, she didn’t get expelled because “It just slipped out of her hand.” She did get expelled a few months later when she brought a weapon to school.
66. Wash It All Down
This kid in my class told everyone in the class that his dad dips his bacon in a glass of water during breakfast and calls it bacon water, and drinks it on most of the mornings. The kid was just talking up a storm even before he said this, and no one was really listening until then. However, then the whole class turned their heads and was like what?!!
This kid had NO idea that bacon water was not a staple of most people’s breakfasts. It was hands down the funniest moment of my teaching career.
67. Down to the Slammer
I teach kindergarten, and I had a terrible, terrible child in my class last year. He liked to pull his desk away from the girl sitting across from him so her pencils and crayons would go falling on the floor. Finally, one day she got fed up and slammed her desk back into his. Unfortunately for him, his fingers happened to be there. Justice was served.
68. Sleeping Tight
I work with preschool and elementary-aged kids, so I hear a lot of things. The one that comes to mind: I was meeting with a preschool child and her parent. The child was drawing a picture with crayons while I talked with the mother. Out of nowhere, the kid looked up from her drawing and loudly declared, “Mommy sleeps naked in her bed!”
I expected the mother to be embarrassed. Instead, without missing a beat, she looked at her daughter and firmly said, “What did I tell you? Don’t tell other people about my business!”
69. Bigger Things On The Mind
I worked at a summer daycare when I was 18. I asked a 7-year-old child why her mom didn’t pack her lunch like she did every day. I thought that maybe the mom was out of town and the dad had forgotten. She replied, “My mom had surgery on her breasts to make them bigger and she forgets a lot of things.” She even pointed at the area in question in case I didn’t know what she was talking about. I was speechless.
70. Seen A Ghost
I taught drama for elementary kids. Eight-year-old girl says she has a question and leads with, “So you know those portals that ghosts use to get places?” I told her I had no idea what ghosts use to travel. She starts telling me how there’s a ghost man in her bedroom and she talks to him almost every night. Her parents got a priest to cleanse their house and the supernatural visits stopped.
I came to find out later that the girl’s grandfather provides funding for “gifted children” (I think he called them “Moon Children”? Let me know if you’ve heard of this) and raises money to build underground boarding schools for kids who can communicate with the spirit world. He also provided a monthly stipend to a woman who needed money to continue feeding the unicorns who would eat her backyard plants every morning.
71. Double and Triple Checked
When I was a TA for a freshmen English class, I busted a kid for plagiarism. He was furious and refused to drop the course. He was a slimy, smarmy kid who thought I was dumb, but joke’s on him—he ended up failing the course THREE ways: plagiarizing, exceeding absences, and not completing the final. You can argue about one way to get an F. You can’t argue about 3.
72. A Doughy Story
I was teaching the first grade in Central America and in the lunch line, one of the boys saw me pay with what looked like a lot of cash. He looked up at me and said, “My dad has a lot of cash too. He keeps it in boxes in his closet.” I actually had a decent relationship with his dad and told him about the comment. He just looked at me with a smile and called it go money.
73. Use The Forceps
During a science practical, students needed to use forceps to remove a leaf from a test tube. A Grade 9 boy wanted to ask me, “Should I use my forceps now?” but accidentally asked, “Should I use my foreskin now?” The look on his face when he realized what he said…luckily his friends didn’t hear and I managed to keep a straight face, somehow.
74. Playing Favorites
Last weekend I sent positive emails to the families of all of my students, because remote learning is hard and the kids are really stepping up. On Tuesday, when I saw one of my classes for the first time since sending the messages, a girl said to me, “That email you sent made my dad happy. He doesn’t like me that much, and it made him like me.” My heart broke for that poor girl.
She’s bright, friendly, and hard-working. I asked her (privately) if she was safe at home and if there was anything I could do to help—she told me her dad liked her brother much better.
75. Middle School Stalker
I had two students approach me after school. I was outside monitoring the kids leaving the building to walk home, and these two boys walked up and started telling me how cute I was as a baby. Being middle schoolers, I didn’t take it super seriously at first, but asked what they were talking about. One of them showed me one of my baby pictures on his phone and proceeded to tell me my address and (at the time) fiancé’s name. It scared the living daylights out of me.
The assistant principal was nearby, so I called him over and had them repeat what they’d said. The information they had was not readily available with a quick Google search and I still don’t know how they got it. One of the boys’ fathers was a known higher up in a local gang, so I was totally freaked out. The school took the stance of “kids will be curious” and “it isn’t a big deal.”
I learned that I was well within my rights to press charges, but within 30 minutes of the conversation, the assistant superintendent was at my classroom door, informing me of how “bad” it would look on my evaluation and for potential future jobs if I pursued anything. I no longer work there, but I have never been more disturbed or scared.
76. Lost In Translation
There was a student I had whose parents never attempted to communicate with or even teach their child sign language. Or even enroll them in school at all. The parents neglected their child for so long the only way they knew how to communicate was like an animal. The school was able to bring the child around but the parents still never bothered to learn ASL. On parent-teacher nights apparently the teacher translated one of the first conversations the parents ever had with their own kid.
77. Beautiful Woodpeckers
I teach K5 at a private, Christian school. One of our poems we’ve been learning is about a woodpecker. In an effort to help the poem make more sense, I taught the kids about woodpeckers, which are common in my state, and looked up pictures and videos of them doing their thing. The kids loved it. We were going outside on the playground that day, so I told the kids to listen close and they might hear one up in the trees.
So, during PE, I’m sitting in the sun watching my kids, minding my own business, when one of my kids comes up and says, “Hey Mrs. PaperThin, I’ve been looking for them peckers.” It took me a second to register what this blonde, chubby-cheeked angel had just said to me. Then I realized he meant woodpeckers…I gently corrected him, “Oh, you’ve been looking for the woodpeckers?” “Yeah, them peckers.” I was terrified he was going to go home and tell his parents I had taught him about “peckers”, but thankfully he did not.
78. A Relaxing Weekend
I was asked what I did with my dad over the weekend. I said, “Nothing. All dad did all weekend was sit in bed drinking and sleeping. He didn’t do anything else all weekend.” What I didn’t tell my teacher was that my father was sick all weekend and needed bed rest and juice/water. The teacher reasonably assumed my dad had drinking issues and a call went home to confirm everything was alright.
79. Stepdaughter’s New Clothes
My stepdaughter is a pretty difficult child. She is diagnosed with ADHD and ODD and my significant other and I think she is probably FASD as well. Me and her butt heads like no other! Well, it got to the point where she refused to wear any other clothing than what seemed like just three shirts and I was getting sick of arguing with her.
So, when her teachers noticed that there was some dirt on one of the shirts (because I am not doing her laundry every three days), they asked her about it, and she told them we didn’t own a washing machine. She had been going to this school for almost four years by this point. The teachers called me to ask if everything was ok financially and so I informed them that we did indeed have a washing machine.
80. Moment Of Clarity
I get into an elevator at the same time a Business Ethics class is getting out. The doors close and I’m surrounded by what are obviously well-groomed pastel-wearing 20-year-old trust fund boys. One of them says: “I don’t get why we have to take business ethics. Business is the opposite of ethics!” Immediately the mood in the elevator lights up as all of his classmates agree with him.
I envision all of them ruining humanity in five years time and despair.
81. Temper, Temper
A fourth-grade boy, we’ll call him Q, told me: “I lit a trash can on fire walking to school today, the lady at that apartment called 9-1-1. I threatened my younger brother to take the rap. Now they took him to juvi. My mom is gonna freak.” That day he had a tantrum outside my door and tried to kick in the window. He tried to come in and I blocked the door, he took a soccer dive and I was put on leave.
While he remained in class he strong-armed all nine boys into writing statements that I pushed him. The dean of discipline took it to HR and put me on leave for 6 months until the attorneys could sort it out and bring me in for a discovery hearing and back pay reinstated. The only girl in class was from Haiti and put in my sweat hogs class for remedial reading.
She wrote the truth about the incident in broken English. I was so proud that she learned to read and write in that environment saying, “Q tip all the tables and yell. Q hit the boys. Mr. LocND try to help … Q kick the windo, I was scare, Mr. LockND hug him from falling on the step. Principal came and get Mr. then Q hit the boys more.”
One year I had a student who was severely emotionally disturbed. One day he went into the bathroom and when he emerged from the bathroom in our classroom, he was naked and covered in his own poop. He came running out of the bathroom heading straight for me. I don’t think I’ve ever moved so fast in my life as I did that day to avoid a messy hug.
I mean, I felt a little bit bad because he did have emotional issues, but I’m sorry—when I say he was covered in poop, I mean he had smeared poop from his head all over his body down to his feet. The smell was gagging all of us. That’s the day I will never, ever forget…
83. May The Good Lord Take Me
I had a student who had no emotions whatsoever. He was nine years old and thought the world was out to get him. There was once he was caught with items that he took from his friends. So when I asked him if he did it, he said “Yeah, so?” I asked if he knew stealing was not right and he said “Yeah but they all deserve what they get” as he stared deep into my soul.
I told him that it was not the right thing to do or the right mindset to have he said. And he told me “If God thought I was wrong, he would’ve taken me up a long time ago.” It was my first year of teaching and I remember feeling a chill down my spine as he spoke to me.
84. A Wet Blanket
I was an elementary librarian, and I was telling the kids how they mustn’t get the books wet or take them in the bath, as the pages would get wrinkly and destroyed. One kid stood up and said, very sweetly, “My mom says she finally found a good lotion for wrinkles, maybe we could put that on the books?”
85. Indoor Sunbathing
My partner worked in a kindergarten and a four-year-old boy told her one day that he had woken up late last night. Upon waking up, he went into the Television Room and he found that his mummy and daddy were laughing because he walked in when they had no clothes on and they were sunbathing in front of the fire.
86. Sipping Away
Not a teacher, but I once had a kid say that their mommy and daddy drink every night. I was suspicious, but later next week I was having a dinner time session with them. Dad was having an IPA. Mom had about two glasses of red. It was the same thing during the next couple of dinners. They don’t drink too much, but they do have a drink or two for every dinner, but not enough to get tipsy at all. However, the kid just knew that they “drank.”
87. Space Invaders
My coworker had a second-grade student who would go into the fetal position and say that aliens were going to come out of the ground. He was completely serious. Too many sci-fi movies maybe?
88. Committing Sudoku
The subject matter for this one was disturbing, but I’ll admit that I laughed out loud at the wording. Instead of completing a writing assignment, the student turned in a long, punctuation-free rant about the difficulties of picking a topic for the assignment. He said he had a couple of ideas but couldn’t find sources and was so stressed out that he wanted to “commit sudoku.” Presumably, he meant seppuku, and so I got his mom and a counselor involved.
Turns out he wasn’t serious. He’s fine. Just at an age that values histrionics for their own sake. Still…sudoku.
89. Dressing Up
My husband has a student whose mom has a massive crush on him. She tells him all the time about how her mom primps before they do anything online, so she can lean in and say hi to him.
90. Not Father Of The Year
It wasn’t a student, but his father. A guy came up to me on parents’ night and told me to call him if his kid needed a good yelling, since his kid was so useless. While I stood there in shock, he added, “He’s always been lazy, but he’s been worse since his roommate at his last school committed suicide. Don’t hesitate to call me if he pulls that again.”
91. Jesus Take The Wheel
A (kindergarten) student drew a picture of himself floating in outer space smiling and pointing at a giant red button on his spacesuit. I asked what the button was for. He said, “It’s so I can suicide myself so I can be with Jesus.” His completely embarrassed mother responded to my concerned email explaining that this portrait was likely the fruit of two separate conversations she’d had with him that week, the first explaining suicide bombers, the second explaining that his recently deceased grandfather was in a better place “with Jesus.” Kids are wild…
92. Extreme Cosmetics
A student of mine was really insecure with his appearance, so he had said he would change his eye color by applying bleach on them. At first I thought it was a pun or a joke or something, however, I soon realized he was serious. I had to call his guardian to explain what had happened. He was 13 years old at that time.
I had a student who came to school one day. She told a story in class that one of her friends was being mean on social media so she burned her house down. Later that day found out another girl was absent because her house caught on fire last night. Turns out, she did burn the house down, the principal called her to the office after lunch and admitted it. She burned a nice suburban two-story house to the ground around midnight. She was nice enough to ring the doorbell to wake the family before running off.
Yeah, so she is in juvie now.
94. Retribution Education
I had a math class in senior year that was held in a science lab with showers, an eye wash station, etc. It was a class that had kids from grades 10-12 in it. One of the seniors was a big dude on the football team who really enjoyed messing with the smaller kids. He was the worst of what high school sports churn out, you know the type.
He liked to get this one dude riled up every day by pretending to pull the emergency shower every time he walked by. He giggled like a smug doofus every time. One day, I had enough and just went, “Hey, Nelson” while he was under the shower. I waited for him to look me in the eyes, then I pulled it. “THIS is how it works!” Didn’t even get in much trouble. Still love that moment.
95. Guess Who’s the New Sheriff in Town?
My high school buddy Steve was a troublemaker. We had a really lax teacher in sophomore English, who was a long-term substitute and not in full control of the class. Meanwhile, we also had a student-teacher named Mrs. Gomez who was good and kind, but obviously didn’t have full disciplinary power either in the situation.
This leaves room for people to get rowdy, ESPECIALLY Steve. One day after a particularly loud interlude, Mrs. Gomez gets a belly full and tells Steve to be quiet. Steve looks her in the eye and says, “You’re not the teacher. I don’t have to do ANYTHING you say.” He then goes right back to whatever he was doing. Mrs. Gomez was LIVID.
Her face was bright red and she looked like she wanted to throttle Steve, but he was right and she knew it, so she kept her mouth shut. But she got the best payback. A month later, we walk into class and the old substitute is nowhere to be seen, but there’s Mrs. Gomez sitting comfortably at the teacher’s desk like she owns it.
The bell rings, and she stands up and says, “Hello, everyone.” She then turns and looks directly at Steve, “I’m your new teacher.” Steve didn’t get away with much in class after that.
96. Finding Family
An 11th grader was talking about how he moved back with his grandparents when his mom passed. He mentioned that his mom had also attended this school and so had his dad, but he had never met him. He only knew his dad’s first name. So, he said the name in my “get to know other students first-day icebreaker.” This is where it gets crazy. A freshman girl asked a few pointed questions, pulled out her phone, and called her dad.
The dad was there within 15 minutes. It turned out that the late mom’s family moved mom out of the city to hide the pregnancy and the dad only knew the child’s first name. The mom and dad had only been high school students at the time. Mom moved from a downtown major northern city to Alabama or Louisiana to be with her grandfather. The baby boy got the maternal grandfather’s name.
The dad did not have the money or the resources to track down the mom’s movement. This would be in the pager/cassette days and not during the years of cell phones and Facebook. The dad spent years trying unsuccessfully to track his kid and the kid’s mom down. He, later, settled down, became an EMT, got married, and had three daughters.
Among the three daughters, the oldest daughter was the previously mentioned freshman. There was a GD family reunion in my icebreaker on the first day of school.
97. Swings Galore
I had a child once playing on the tire swing. He was a very serious kid and he looked me straight in the eye and said how much he liked the swing at daycare. He went on to say how, when he grew up, he wanted to have a swing just like his mummy and daddy did in their bedroom. Looking his parents in the eye that day, telling them he had a good day, and keeping silent was difficult.
98. It Didn’t Add up
I interned in a class with this kid who always thought he was smarter than everyone else. He was pretty smart, but not by too much. Yet he always got paired with kids who weren’t as smart as him, so he would always be super smug when dealing with them. During one parent-teacher conference, we found out exactly where he got it from.
His parents thought he was the smartest kid in the school. They built him up as that and they got him thinking it, too. In this meeting, they even went off on the teacher, saying she “was bringing him down” and that she “was terrible.” The conference ended when the teacher left the room crying. But it didn’t take long for sweet revenge.
About a week later, there was an event where parents came to watch their children do math games with other students. Well, the teacher paired this smug little kid with the actual smartest kid in class. The kid got destroyed in the math games. His parents were so flustered, they left before it was all done and took him out of school for the rest of the day.
99. Money Can’t Buy You Class
I’ve been a TA for a couple courses at my university, which is fairly competitive and the students are generally all top notch. Once in a blue moon, though, someone slips by the admission process. My worst experience was as a TA for a lower division math course. She was a freshman student, and spoiled doesn’t begin to cut it.
Her family was clearly loaded, and I suspect she went to some insanely expensive private school that wrote her application for her. This girl would be in designer clothes and on her phone or laptop the entire time in lecture. Obviously everyone does this sometimes, but this girl was clearly just chatting with her friends and shopping for clothes all the time.
When she failed to turn in the first four problem sets, I sent her a quick email to let her know that homework contributed to a significant portion of her grade. I also said I’d still accept them. I never got a response. So she gets a blatant F on her first midterm. Like, it’s not an F that could be rounded up to anything significant.
She was at a point where she should’ve just dropped out and try again next semester. I sent another email saying this. This time I got a response, with her stating she could make the grade back next midterm. Alright, I think, suit yourself. So I continue through the rest of the semester. She’s still failing…until something absolutely ridiculous happens.
At the last meeting of my discussion section, SHE SHOWS UP! Not just that, but with her parents. Oh my god, it gets better. She stays after the session to introduce me to her parents, and then hands me a stack of papers and informs me that it’s all the homework for the semester. Meanwhile her parents are sitting there all proud of their little girl.
I take the stack graciously and, in my most professional voice, let her know that I’d be happy to take a look at it, but she won’t get any credit. Her parents’ faces completely fall. Her father starts to insult me. So I show them everything: The abysmal attendance record, the 0% homework score, the low, low, low midterm scores.
Now she’s starting to tear up and the parents are seriously fuming. Not wanting to put myself in the middle of the rest of the storm, I mumble that I have a class to get to and sprint out of there…but not before I hear the student getting chewed up so loudly that people actually poked their heads out of classrooms. She never showed up for the final.
100. Silly Rabbit, Tricks Are for Kids
I was 15 or 16 and teaching the 2- and 3-year-olds at church. It was Easter, and one little boy comes in crying up a storm. Nothing that my friend and I do can console him. About halfway through he stops and just sniffles. At the end when the parents come and pick them up, he sees his dad and starts crying again, telling his dad that he doesn’t want anything to do with him.
His mom comes and gets him, and my friend and I tell her about her son. She was trying SO HARD not to laugh and told us why. The boy’s dad hit a rabbit on the way to church this morning, and the boy started to cry, thinking it was the Easter Bunny.