Unfortunately (or fortunately, depending on your point of view), I can easily forget frustration and pain. I remember "the good times" really well, but my memory grows hazy when I try to recall something painful. Hence, I felt bad yesterday as I submitted some of the final trimester grades for my students. I had to try really hard to remember what the fuck these kids did (or didn't do) to deserve a 55%.
"I'm the teacher. Me. Not them. Me. I'm Yo Mista."
I keep forgetting I'm the teacher sometimes. I'm not here to please, I'm here to impart knowledge. I may be funny (and sexy), but that's just an added bonus. It's tough because some students think I'm "cool" (or so I'm told) and simultaneously look up to me. What do I do with this information? I felt terrible today when students who I knew failed my class (some miserably) kept coming up to me with sad puppy eyes:
"Did you pass me Mista? I came yesterday to take your test, otherwise I wasn't comin' at all!"
I'm not that stupid though. I forget that as a teenager, I used to do whatever I could to ace my classes (this includes doing extra work, being nice, going out of my way to help out, etc.) Of course, I didn't need to do those things given I actually wanted to learn, but you know, just in case. Plus, if I've worked my ass off for the first half of the class, why not slack off a bit at the end and take advantage of my good standing? This is all part of being a good (and smart) student...
This strategy should hypothetically only work if you have put in a good amount of effort. I refuse to let sad puppy eyes come in the way of a student's grade if they've done jack shit all year. I'm sorry, but just showing up isn't good enough. Not showing up is even worse, so don't try to win me over on the last day by smiling, batting your eyes and playing all nice. You can't bullshit the bullshitter.