Day 9 Aim: How do I respond to personal questions from students?

“Mr. Harlow, are you married?” At some point this year I’m going to be asked this question. When the kid drops this on you, you basically have three options. The first option is the simple dismissal. Tell the student that personal questions do not belong in a professional environment like your classroom. Your second choice is simply be honest with the student. If you choose this route, I also suggest a snarky addition such as, “No I’m not married because no woman would want to listen to me talk about students like you every day”. The final option, and most fun if you can pull it off, is to lie to your students.  To pull this off, you need a story, and you need to stick to it. There is a teacher who will go unnamed who has told his students he has eight kids for the past three years. He knows their names better than Antonio Cromartie knows his real kids names. He has Jerry, George, Elaine, Kramer, Delicious, Isosceles, Tangent, and Hero. Because he’s stuck to this story, some kids believe him. If they don’t, well then they don’t ask personal questions anymore. Why wasn’t there a daily aim the past two days? I was busy taking care of Delicious and Isosceles.

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