Painting, more fun than drawing

Painting has been a hit with everyone. After weeks upon weeks of drawing, painting must seem like  a great privilege. The students who once were giving me a hard time are now being nice and doing assignments, most of the time. And unfortunately, one of the best artists in either of my classes has become wordlessly disrespectful. She has been close with my mentor teacher for all four years of High School. He has nothing but nice things to say about her. She is also his teacher’s aid first period. She never says hi to me but always tells him hello and good bye. She takes over my space, moves my stuff around and replacing it with her stuff and acts as if she ‘belongs’ there more than I do. I wanna say, “Yes you belong here, you’ve been here for four years, longer than I  certainly have, but you belong here for a different reason. You belong here as a high-school student and I belong there as a graduate student.You have to be here but I chose to be here.”  If she only had been a little nicer to me, and said hello to me at least once, like her younger sister, who is a joy to have in class, than I wouldn’t feel as strong as I do about the situation. She also has a friend who is not in one art class, who has started comming in with her, to the art room all the time, and this girl is just as rude. Another thing that bothers me is that she never asks me if she can be excused from class, or anything else, she asks my mentor teacher and rolls her eyes and says “whatever” when he tells her to talk to me. So he just gave in, started to allow her to do things in my class. Today I didn’t even she her in class, she was randomly walking in and out of the back door with her friend. I assumed that she was doing her monochromatic painting outside, but realized she wasn’t when they came in with a pile of painted  t-shirts. I looked outside after they left and saw that they had painted their names in acrylic paint on the sidewalk too. I told my mentor teacher about it, but he wasn’t startled by it.  Oddly, he had been sitting at a desk in the back, facing out a window that had a direct view of the area where the girls were painting, throughout the entire period. He said oh they’ll be scrubbing that off on monday. He didn’t sound very sincere, so I decided to ask him the last name of the  friend and what grade they were in. He told me, and I wrote each of them a referral for vandalism.

2 thoughts on “Painting, more fun than drawing

  1. My students have also been enjoying painting much more than drawing– and it IS a privilege, gosh darn it! Amazing that the switch in medium can have such a soothing effect!

    The situation with the aide sounds pretty tough– good for you for standing up to them on the vandalism. She sounds very disrespectful, have you had a one on one with her, or maybe spoken to her together with your mentor teacher?

    I have an aide in my photography class, who used to give me a hard time, until she started warming up to me a couple of weeks ago. It was really hard for her to adjust to other ways of doing things (I don’t teach photography in completely the same way as my mentor teacher does). Once she adjusted, she was fine.

    If your class likes you, and they see her acting like that, they will be on your side. If this is the case, another possible thing to do, is create situations where the class sees what she is doing; they won’t like it, and it may help put an end to her behavior. I’m trying to do that right now in my drawing and painting class with a few people…

    It sounds like your doing a good job, in difficult situations! Bravo, and keep up the good work!

  2. I like the fact that you took the initiative and wrote the students referrals for vandalizing school property even though your mentor teacher acted nonchalant about the situation. The teachers-aide needed to be put in check because it sounds like she is getting away with disrespecting you and the rules that you are trying to uphold. Why is your mentor teacher allowing this girl to act this way? It would drive me crazy. It sounds like you are handling the situation amazingly and the other students have recognized your effort and respect you as a teacher.
    As time goes on this student aide will figure out that you are serious about maintaining an educational environment and that she is fighting a war that she has no chance at winning. Anyways it sounds like everything else is going wonderful and that the students are truly enjoying painting and having you as their teacher. Keep up the outstanding work and good luck with the crazy aide.

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