Saturday, December 1, 2007

Love and Graph Paper

The last block on Friday is not the best time for Algebra, the girls are giggly and unfocused, they blurt out random things as weekend thoughts flit through their unwinding minds, and I am tired too and thoughtlessly answer the question when it comes from out of left field:

- Ms. C., are you married?

- Uhuh.

Murmur and wide grins all around. My brain starts scanning for ways of getting us back on task again as the girls start hurling follow-up questions:

- Ms. C., Ms. C., do you love him?

I wrongly see an opportunity for getting back to Algebra, and nod enthusiastically.

- Yeah. He's really good at math. I love him.

It's a wildfire of hilarity around the room - how could I not have anticipated that? I make a stern face and tell them to settle down. They actually do get serious for a moment, then ask again:

- Ms. C, how did he propose? Come on, please, tell how he proposed!

- No more questions now. If you're really focused for the rest of the block, you can ask off-topic questions during the last three minutes of class.

That's probably not a management strategy in accordance with the books. However, the girls do actually get into their graphing assignment then, and are pretty productive for a Friday afternoon. But they don't forget, and when the bell rings and they're free to go home they're asking again. I'm mystified by their romanticism. Seriously, who's into proposal styles when they're 15?

- What if I proposed to him?

Bright-eyed astonishment, and a wave of surprised laughter: - You did? That's cool! What did you say?

- Maybe I wrote a letter instead.
- On graph paper.

I shake my head at the uproar.

- You don't seriously believe everything I say?

The girls troop out and leave for the weekend, and I find myself grinning while recalling the dialog, as well as remembering those elements that make up the true half of the story. We have an anniversary today.


Jackie Ballarini said...

It may not be a classroom management strategy in the books, but if it works, why not?

Happy Anniversary.

H. said...

Thanks, Jackie :)

Sarah Cannon said...

Happy Anniversary!

For what it's worth, I think I was curious about proposal stories by the time I was 15. It makes sense when you consider how much of your social energy at that age is focused on dating and romance (whether you're dating or not).

So what is the true story? I'm still in the stage of wanting to hear them. ;-)

H. said...

Sorry, Sarah - if I were okay with spreading more personal detail out on the 'net I probably wouldn't be blogging anonymously in the first place. This was almost too much already :)

Sarah Cannon said...

Completely understood.