The adventures of a fourth grade teacher in East Central Illinois.

Melting Crayons

Today I was a 7th grade science teacher at Edison Middle School in Champaign. I’ve worked with these students several times in the past, and have had great experiences, so I was hoping today would be a continuation of that.

Alas, it was not to be.

The biggest issue of the day was not talking and disrespect. It was actually melting crayons. For some reason, there is an exposed hot water pipe in the classroom that connects to the radiator. At some point in the year, the students discovered that the crayons the teacher has in her room have a low enough melting point that, when placed on this pipe, they will melt and drip all over the floor. I cannot for the life of me figure out why they think this is acceptable, nor can I figure out why they think that their teacher is okay with it (she isn’t, by the way).

So instead of having a pleasant day of teaching about Gregor Mendel and his thousands of experiments with peas, I spent the bulk of my day telling students to keep away from the pipe and to stop melting crayons. I did teach about Mendel, incidentally. Just not as much as I would have liked. Oh well. Maybe next time.


10 responses

  1. I recall doing that in Middle School 😛 lol

    February 9, 2011 at 3:54 pm

    • But were you doing that instead of working, or in addition to?

      February 9, 2011 at 3:57 pm

  2. It was art class LOL. So both?

    February 9, 2011 at 4:00 pm

    • By the by, I just browsed your website. Couldn’t help but notice that you say Beer Universe is for “none-other then beer lovers of course!” and it should probably say “none other than beer lovers, of course!”

      February 9, 2011 at 10:03 pm

  3. Take the high ground. Wage a war of annihilation. Carry the battle into their camp. Shoot a hostage early. Confiscate all contraband. Isolate and humiliate instigators. Promote and support the loyalists. Simple rules and merciless enforcement wins the day. Do these things and the enemy…er, the young scholars…will be eating Mendeleev’s* peas out of your hand, and you will not have to employ a useless rearguard action against crayon terrorists.

    *Note that I insist on the correct Russian spelling of his name. You aren’t the only spelling snob in the room, young squire.

    February 9, 2011 at 9:50 pm

  4. So what does one do when one finds oneself behind enemy lines, as it were, and there are no loyalists to promote? I only have 45 minutes with these children, and I can’t send an entire class to the office.

    Also, unless I have been misinformed my entire life, Gregor Mendel was an Austrian monk. Mendeleev was the dude who first put together a period table of elements, wasn’t he?

    February 9, 2011 at 9:59 pm

  5. Mendel/Mendeleev. Different guys. In my dotage I pea-riodically confuse the two.

    To answer your first question, I can only say DILIGENCE! It’s a non-answer. I have no answers. You are on your own and God have mercy on your soul, sir.

    February 9, 2011 at 10:32 pm

  6. Thanks I’ll get it fixed! Me fail english thats unpossible!

    February 10, 2011 at 8:51 am

  7. Bryce

    Ha. I remember melting crayons in middle school as well. Wasn’t art class in the basement? Kind of where we use to play dodgeball?

    February 12, 2011 at 8:21 pm

    • You are correct, Bryce. The art room was next to the room in the basement where we did indeed play dodgeball. Was it the lunchroom, too? I don’t remember.

      But you guys do realise that there is a difference between melting crayons in art class and melting them during science when you are supposed to be doing work, right?

      February 12, 2011 at 8:31 pm

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