Thursday, September 04, 2008

Apples, Trees and A$$holes

Yesterday was the first full day of school and about 2:30 pm my phone rings... it's the Principal. I'm not kidding, essentially the first day of school and I'm already getting calls from the office. Anyone who has met my children probably has no trouble guessing who it was for. She wanted to let me know that one of my children would likely be upset when they arrived home today. That there was an incident on the playground that she was unable to get to the bottom of and that caused my child great upset when she was asking questions about it. She intended to speak with the children involved individually today and sort it all out. *sigh*

Children arrive home... everyone had an awesome day. "I love school" proclaims Turtle. Kodiak said he has the best class and is really looking forward to what is on the curriculum for the year. La Diva was still on safety patrol. Yeah... you guessed it right... Iceman. "Did you really have a great day Iceman?" He looks me square in the eye, you can see the wheels turning and then proceeds to spin a story. I knew he started off with some truths but then the tale started to spin in the dramatic fashion that is Iceman. I say "Is that what happened?" Sheepish look... eyes wide... "well.... not exactly... I tried to not get in the middle of it but the big kids were hurting the little kids.... then it turned into this situation:

grade 3 kid: tries to take Iceman's special firefighter hat that the Hero brought back from TO.

Iceman: That hat is from TO and it cost $100.00!! Don't touch it!

grade 3 kid: I don't care, goes to grab it again...

Iceman: pushes kid... says "Stop being such an asshole"!

grade 3 kid: I'm telling, you are going to get in trouble.

Iceman: I'm sorry, I shouldn't have done that.

Then I'm assuming telling ensued, Iceman already beside himself has a meltdown with tears and then his story changes 3 times while he is trying to explain it. Sadly this is a trick he learned last year when "tattling" was frowned upon. Iceman could not process this rule and I told his teacher that on numerous occasions. He has always been a black and white kid, rules are rules and not made to be broken. As the "I'm sorry letters" stacked up last year from all the bullying, Iceman told on friends less and began to lie to cover their butts more. Now he has real struggles with the whole right and wrong thing. Is it wrong to tell on a friend? They of course tell him they won't play with him anymore or whatever and for a kid who is used to being loved and adored by everyone this is just not acceptable.

I'm not condoning my kid stooping to the level of the bullies but I also am a bit proud of him for standing up to an older kid who was picking on younger kids. It was wrong but part of me wishes I could get away with telling someone to "Stop being an asshole!" There are plenty of people who could stand to hear that kind of directive.

I made him write a letter to the Principal, explaining what took place. I told him that we will not tolerate his lies and that he is not to be lying to the Principal or teachers. I also told him, AGAIN, that I don't care what anyone says about tattling that if he thinks someone is doing something wrong that he is to tell a grown up. If the grown up does not deal with it then he is to come home and tell us. We will deal with the grown ups. Last year he didn't tell about a kid with a knife at school because he was only stabbing a snowball and not hurting anyone or himself and that was how he understood the stupid tattling rule his teacher had adopted. We heard about it over a week later from him.

Can't blame the kid for standing up for himself. He sees his Dad, who works from home, not take any crap from people. He sees that he is well respected at his job, in the community, etc. He wants to be him so if I'm going to fault the apple... I should also be getting after the tree. The Hero is a good man and for our son to grow up to be like him isn't a bad thing.

4 comments:

  1. Good for Iceman! Seriously, if someone is trying to take your stuff you have a right to defend yourself. Perhaps not the most sophisticated response, but totally appropriate for his age. I love the asshole comment, no it isn't right to say that and yes there are better, nicer words to use. But it really does sum up the situation nicely.

    congrats to the rest of the crew for an awesome first day!

    love,
    Auntie Hippie ( who thinks kids should be allowed to speak their mind!)

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  2. I too am proud of Iceman. Someone needs to stand up for the injustices of the world (playground!) It appears that last years teacher did him no favours with the tattling rule. Sheesh if I were a teacher I would want to know if a child had a knife in my class. I understand where Iceman is coming from... I guess kids being kids stories do change, I hope through all of thie Iceman learns to tell the truth first time!

    Oh and I have a long list of assholes who need to be told that. Unfortunately I don't stick up for myself often!

    Bug hugs to you all!!

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  3. OK, first - I had to LOL b/c it reminded me of my 16-yo nephew's first day at school. Mind you, his parents fully expected the call from the principal - he's always been a handful and a half - but my BIL had to cringe a little when the report came of Mac's exclamation on the playground: "Wow, this place looks like shit!"

    Secondly, wth is it with making kids feel bad for tattling? Yes there is a fine line there, but it can certainly be discussed and defined so that kids understand that certain situations merit an adult's attention! Geez! In fact, I remember a long-ago episode of "Bobby's World" that dealt with this very subject, when Jonah and Bekah were little. Perhaps that episode should be required viewing in the elementary classroom!

    I have to give Iceman a lot of credit. I would have done the Sandra Bullock thing and just punched the little asshole ... er, um - brat.

    At least he used his words! LOL

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  4. Go Iceman, Go!

    I'm a FIRM believer in "What gets us in trouble as 3rd graders are the same traits that make us VERY successful adults!"

    Seeing as I got a call from the principal on the first day, too, that's my story and I'm sticking to it!

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