I have a difficult child in one of my classes. He's seven years old, and for purposes of this blog, let's call him Nero. Difficulty paying attention, loud, fidgety, doesn't follow directions, and obstinate. OBSTINATE. Every so often I get a child who does not respond to any method of getting him to change his mind. Nero is this child.
Imagine the scenario: Class is just beginning, and everyone filters in, chitting and chatting and being little kids. Nero sits in the same seat he usually sits in, a spot that is designated by the regular teacher in that room as the "leader seat." The table leader sits in this seat. The kids give the seat special reverence and everyone wants to sit there. Louis*, another little boy at that table, asked me if he could sit in the leader seat this week, since Nero sat there the last two weeks. I politely asked Nero to move, and explained that it was fair.
He said no.
I asked him to move, less politely. He said no. This went on for at least a couple of MINUTES, because I'll be damned if I was going to let this child break me. The level of attitude was astounding. I've never met a child so stubborn. And then he said the one thing that made me understand him.
"When I'm at home, I get to do whatever I want."
Well, GEE. Ain't that just great. Dear Nero's parents: Your kid is an asshole. He disrupts the class, he's rude, he has no concept of proper behavior, and it's all your fault. Thank you.