Monday, May 10, 2010

The Big Bad Fad

Over time there have been many fads that I'm quite certain were developed simply to make teachers insane. I apologize to my former educators for my distracted behavior that was a result of the Friendship Pin Craze of the 80s. This is not to be confused with my compulsive sticker-trading tendencies from that same decade. Both rocked my world and in hindsight I'm sure they caused teachers quite a few headaches.

As I began my journey to become a teacher I faced the Great Pog Craze of the 1990s during my student teaching days. As a young college gal, I quickly learned the fine art of confiscating a small object from the fiddling hands of a seven year old without breaking stride in a riveting lesson on nouns.

I had my own real teaching job just in time to be annoyed by Pokemon cards. The children thought they were oh-so-slick as they slid them from the pocket of one child, palmed it to another and into the pocket of another. Only Pokemon was no match for me. By June I had a top desk drawer filled with a collection that would make any Japanese animation loving elementary student drool with jealousy.

If I was really smart, I would be a step ahead of the fad. I myself would invent the next big thing. I would be responsible for teachers nationwide losing their cool over the annoyance of the latest childhood distractor. But, alas I am still on the confiscating side of the fad.

This year it is the Crazy Band.

So simple.

So cheap to manufacture.

So darn annoying.
It took a week for me to "Ban the Bands." At first I let it go. I figured, "It's a bracelet...who am I to interfere with fashion. But soon they became toys. Then they became currency as children traded them for favors and other objects.

There was a great collective moan as I announced the Ban on Bands, but they saw it coming. They agreed they were distracting.

Yesterday, as we walked to the park my son spotted something in the middle of the road that caused him to react in a manner that dangerously resembled the old arcade game of Frogger.

(a reference to Frogger and Friendship pins in one blog entry...such a trip down memory lane)

It was a castle-shaped Crazy Band and he went crazy for it. The silly .05 cent piece of rubber elicited more excitement than the siting of the actual castle in the Magic Kingdom caused just weeks earlier.

How was it possible that my 4 year old knew about these stupid things? Not only did he know about them, but he appears to have been coveting them.

I let him keep it.

Because when your kid is that excited about something you have to overlook your OCD tendencies that prohibit you from picking up litter and keeping it and your knowledge about street safety that prohibits you from letting your kid walk into the middle of the street and just let him have it.

Not like I don't have a top desk drawer full of them :)

So...what makes you crazy as a teacher?


futureflstar said...

I too dislike them strongly although I was a part of the slap bracelet craze years back LOL. I confiscated 2 today. I first told the kids I would cut them and then realized it might lead to tears so I just kept them. I don't mind if they wear them but if they play with them, they become mine permanently.

Littlest Learners said...

How could I forget the slap bracelets? Too funny.

Frau M. said...

I had a student make a whole set of Yu-Gi-Oh cards on notebook paper so when I confiscated them he wouldn't actually lose any money. Clever and defiant all at the same time.