Visit Number 4
Yesterday I returned to ACES after a few weeks of break, and switched the group of kids I worked with. This time I was working with fifth grade girls rather than boys. This chance to volunteer has really made me realize how mean girls can be and how mean and difficult I was to deal with as an elementary and middle school child.
I was greeted with the word â€śfruitcake.â€? This was all because I was perceived to be a lesbian because I sat closer to a girl than a guy. I was later told not to take offense by other workers. I did not take offense, but it did little to help my mood as I was already stressed. Other girls responded, â€śyou gonna take that? I would slap that biâ€¦â€? and then stopped themselves from swearing because they realized I was a volunteer.
Once we got to the classroom the girl who called me a fruitcake had threatened for about thirty minutes to sue me and that she insisted on being on opposite ends of the room from me. I sat with three other girls, who were constantly distracted by her â€śobnoxiousâ€? (as they put it) behavior and unable to complete their work. I tried to keep them focused and ignore her, but those attempts and skills I finally developed with third grade boys did not seem to help with these girls.
Some things that shocked me today (whether they are appropriate to discuss or not) are learning that a fifth grade girl has given a guy head and listening to her talk about it as not a big deal. SHE IS ONLY A FIFTH GRADERâ€¦ I did not even know about that when I was her age. Second, I do not know how to deal with kids saying retarded or he or she is gay or that is gayâ€¦ I know they donâ€™t understand what they are doing, but it is frustrating, I donâ€™t want them to grow up with those permanent ideas. I simply say I do not want to hear that, but their response is usual just a laugh.
I did think it was an interesting curriculum on energy sources, researching renewable and non-renewable sources to become more aware of the issues of today. Whether or not they truly understand it, at least they are developing an early awareness to it.
As I have said before, when we end the day in the gym, I loose all the frustrations I had in the classroom. Allison and I took to spinning the jump rope again yesterday. Yesterday I even attempted to learn to jump in and jumpâ€¦ in stiletto boots! A+ for me!