Just telling it like it is
Sugar coating doesn’t fit
Last year one of the kindergarten teachers at my school handed me an inappropriate behavior referral for one of her students.
I know what you’re thinking. Inappropriate behavior bad enough that it required a referral? What did this six-year-old do?
The teacher gave it to me (school counselor), because she knew the behavior was bad enough that required attention and I was in closer proximity than our principal at the time.
As she handed the referral folded in half to me, she said, “No rush. Just whenever you can get to it is fine.”
I finished chatting with the student I was currently with and then sat down to read it. I was really glad no one was around when I burst out laughing.
Description of the incident: When it was time to transition to our reading block, I (the teacher) said to the students, “It’s time for reading. Get out your book boxes and head to your spot.” To which said kindergartner replied, “Reading? Are you f*cking kidding me?” There was no anger in his voice. He said it matter of factly and then begrudgingly headed to his spot.
I actually admire this kid. He didn’t like reading and didn’t want to do it. He wasn’t mean about it, and he wasn’t disrespectful to his teacher. He just said it like it is.
Why don’t we do more of just saying it like it is? I think we try to, but we try too hard. We don’t want to hurt someone’s feelings on one hand, but then there are those who are venomous on the other hand.
I know I’m bad at it. When I tell it like it is, it comes out feisty every single time. If I try to sound more authentic, it either sounds fake or comes across as not caring. It’s a vicious battle. Occasionally the words spill out naturally, but it’s by complete accident. It’s like improv where I have no idea what’s going to happen and when it happens the way I want it to I’m just as surprised as everyone else.
So, maybe that’s the key. Treat life more like improv. Jump into each moment and see where it takes me. Throw caution to the wind. Just say it like it is and see what happens.