at least i didn't tell her to shut up

So there's this girl. This is her second time around in the (general ed) first grade. She's receiving special education services through the resource room teacher, and to complicate things, she was in the bilingual program last year.

Basically this just means that she's really low and speaks hard-to-understand "Spanglish". Oh, and she's a total sweetheart.

Yesterday at lunch (we have to eat lunch with the students during the first week to make sure they know how to behave), she was watching me eat my kiwis.

"What's that?"

"These are kiwis."

[spaces out for a few seconds]: "That kiwis?"

"Yes, these are kiwis."

"You like?"

"Yes, I like them."


"Yep, these are my kiwis."

"You like?"

"Yes, I like them."

[eyes glaze over for a second or two]: "Is green?"

[Siiiiiiiiiiiiigh]: "Yes, they're green."

God bless her, she was starting to get on my nerves, but then I wondered if I had sounded just as lost when I was dumped into a French public school when I was seven. My teacher back then knew exactly two words in English: "Shut" and "up" (not kidding!). Somehow I became fluent.

I hope this sudden immersion in an English-only environment does wonders for her. For now, the bilingual teachers are right next door if I need help understanding her!


Sherri said...

You have more patience than I would have had. I mean, I'm eating here, kid....

Sharlene T. said...

I know how she felt... I went to a French school, too, and I would stare at everyone's lips to see how they said things and listen as hard as I could... I'll never forget the day I read a full paragraph out loud and the whole class applauded... I maybe KNEW half the words but, by gar, I could SAY them... you were very good and kind...

Sunny said...

I had an ELL last year (4th grader) who came to our school in 3rd grade speaking ZERO English. Not even one word. We all jumped for joy when she wrote a paper at the end of 3rd grade in half English. By the time I left my class, she was writing completely in English, even if it wasn't fully understandable. What they absorb is truly amazing.

alicia said...

Teachers are special people. Seriously, I don't have the patience required. Haha.

Bethany @ Organic Enchilada said...

You are a saint. What a sweetheart.

And every time I hear the word kiwis, I think of my parent's boxer's testicles. Until he was neutered everyone referred to his sack as kiwis because they looked exactly like the fruit. So, oddly, I kept waiting for a testicle joke here.

I suppose I'm the only perv here though.

Maranda said...

So...ummmm....were you eating kiwis??

LOL! J/K. You are way patient. I probably would have channeled your French teacher and told her to shut up! LOL! But that's why you are the teacher and I am not. She's so lucky to have you!

TeachEnEspanol said...

"At least you didn't tell her to shut up." Amen to that! Am I the only one who thinks that story is kind of adorable? I mean really...she clearly used up ALL of the English reserves she had to have that conversation with you. That takes initiative! :)

WhisperingWriter said...

That would be hard. You are very patient.

Randy et Jan said...

Of all three of my kids, YOU were always the most verbal!!! What goes around comes around!! heh heh.

Glenys said...

Kudos for not telling her to shut up. I can't even teach my friend maths at times without getting frustrated and all hot and bothered.

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