For the past few days Marlow has been calling me: "my Baby" and "my Boo." After I told him to only call me by my name, he would whisper it when I would pass. Finally today, after school, we had a great talk. The way he said Ms. Pereda and hugged me somehow makes me think that he won't be using those words toward any other teacher or any of his female friends.
Today Travon, who is CONSISTENTLY getting suspended and who was recently released from Juvi, actually came to class, didn't walk out, made an effort to complete the work, and even stayed after class for me to ask him more questions to make sure he learned the day's objective. You don't understand - this is NOT normal of this student.
Today Marquel, who is notorious for walking the halls, was also in his class and completed ALL his work. He looked for me later in the day, and just came to give me a hug.
I haven't seen Darious in a few days - i'm worried.
Today, the class started with Jamonie walking in with Go-GO music blasting from her cell phone. "No aint no one ganna take my cell phone - so get away from me!" Buggs walked into class with two other students pushing someone up against the wall (of which NONE were supposed to be in there). Tyneesha was NOT in the mood to do any work, and she made sure EVERYBODY knew about that, and Michael just came in and sat on the teacher's desk and started playing with the overhead projector.
Halfway through the class, I looked up standing from the front of the room, it was quiet, all eyes were on me and the board, and they ALL had their pencils working out the problems on the board. I don't know how I had even gotten there - like gotten to be there in that spot, having a lanyard around my neck and wearing business professional clothes with colorful dry-erase markers in my hand, even deserving the attention of these students.
I realized that I have dreamed of that very moment ever since I played teacher with my plush animals when I was in 3rd grade, in my own bedroom in Huntington Park.
Only this was for reals. With much more beautiful and crazy real people, of which over half are physically taller and just bigger than me.
And today was the day that I realized that I am truly actually getting to know my students - like KNOW them.
Today I also finally got a desk into the classroom I teach in.