Today my classes learned about metamorphic rocks.
Some days, I pair up names from a neon index card stack of class members. Everyone who wants a partner gets a partner. Not always the partner of their dreams, yet still a partner. Today, I let students choose their own partner to complete the assignment.
A partner. One other person. Not two. No super mega groups allowed. Not two or three pairs of partners working in close proximity. Oh, three girls tried to covertly triple up. Their subversive glances alerted me right off. So I put the kibosh on that unapproved union.
This left a little gal without a partner. She tried to lure in the new girl she refers to as THAT GIRL. Funny how THAT GIRL replied that she preferred to work alone. Little Gal appeared crestfallen, even though she regularly refers to THAT GIRL as THAT GIRL. Even though they are on an extracurricular team together. "I think she hates me," said Little Gal.
"She DOES!" chimed in a handful of instigators. THAT GIRL turned to me and bemusedly rolled her eyes. But she did not profess her not-hate for Little Gal.
Little Gal spied a boy working alone. "Boy! Do you want to be my partner?"
They were joking around. I do not torture my students emotionally like this as a matter of course. "Oh. Kids can be so cruel. That's like kicking a puppy out the door when he runs in to greet you."
Boy said, "You're right, Mrs. Hillbilly Mom." He picked up his book and crossed the room to work with Little Gal.
Over the course of the assignment-completing, one young lass, she of the attempted illegal trifecta, declared that she HATES rocks.
"How can you say that? Rocks are like the puppies of the earth's crust! Embrace them. Don't be hatin'. You'll be wishin' you had a rock when second semester rolls around, and you're obeying Newton's laws."
For the record, Young Lass declared that she much prefers law and order to gamboling rock-puppies. We'll see. I have not yet observed her to be a strict law-abider.