Day 6/31 #sol19

It’s all a matter of perspective.

According to me, this is what happened yesterday morning:

I was playing “Zap!” with my second grade mathematicians. They got a little loud with every additional zap that was added to the game, but they were loving it and continuing the count through every zap.

My principal came in with no smile. He said he was trying to talk with a school tour in the central area and he heard this screaming coming from our classroom and he had to stop and come find out what was going on.

I immediately apologized, explaining that it was a new math game we were playing and that things got a little loud and that we’d make a change.

He ignored me, looked right past me, and asked the kids if there was anything that they thought we should do about this.

They suggested closing the door. He said, “good thinking” and left the room.

I closed the door, mortified that we’d just screwed up his already stressful task of greeting and leading a school tour.

In my mind, I was already composing the hat-in-hands apology letter to my principal.


According to my principal, here’s what happed yesterday morning:

He was in the central area, speaking to a new group of perspective parents on the school tour. He heard some noise from the second grade room. He stopped his schpeal to his audience, excused himself for a moment, and told them that he had to go investigate this excess noise.

He saw that we were playing a math game.

He went back to the parents and said, “it’s math noises. There’s no way I’m getting in the way of that excitement.”

He continued his tour, and even had them peek in our window to see how engaged the mathematicians were.

He made a mental note to thank me later for setting him up for the perfect school tour delivery of what happens in school on any given day.


There I was, convinced that I’d ruined Jim’s morning.

There he was, chuckling in his mind about how he just put on this great tour.

When we finally had a chance to chat face to face and all of these misunderstandings came out, boy did we laugh! He ended up being the one to apologize to me for making me stress for a day.

It’s all a matter of perspective, until you put assumptions aside and get the information straight from the source. As it turns out, your brain may not be the most reliable narrator.

21 thoughts on “Day 6/31 #sol19

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  1. You’ve done such a great job of capturing that heart at the bottom of your stomach feeling when the principal comes into the room without a smile. It was great to hear his perspective, too, and to realize that when principals look unhappy, it doesn’t necessarily mean that they are.

    Liked by 1 person

  2. This is such a great slice. I love the structure, but even more, I love the reminder to consider that our interpretation of events might be different than others. I’ve been thinking a lot about how we all have unique perspectives and unless we communicate about them, we have no chance of knowing if we’ve misinterpreted or not! I’m so glad you chatted with your principal and cleared this all up and then recognized the writing opportunity. Thanks for sharing with us!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Phew, great to hear your principal wasn’t an ogre after all and it all ended happily…I think parents ought to think that fun noise is good noise, when they’re on a school tour, but I guess it depends on the parents!! Very enjoyable slice!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Okay, I am an Instructional Math Coach, trying to write for the month. As I was reading your slice, I was thrilled that your kids were so excited about math, engaged, continuing the count, and getting louder and louder. Then my heart sank when you apologized. Why would you apologize for facilitating a lesson that was engaging and fun for second graders?!! Thank goodness you kept me reading . . . I may have figured out where you teach and might have written your principal a nasty letter! LOVE LOVE LOVE your slice!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Ha! That’s awesome. Jim would have loved that letter! He totally gets it. Thanks for your support! We just finished a Math Recovery training and I’ve been trying out some new games and tricks – so far, so good! ❤️

      Like

  5. Looks like I am not the only one to write late at night. I actually had my post in the draft stage since this morning. Perspective is an interesting point to make about a perfectly wonderful student-centered active learning situation. I am delighted that your principal understands (after witnessing first hand) that learning can be filled with joyful noises.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. We are absolutely on the same timeline tonight. I was so happy that I’d at least written two sentences this morning to jumpstart my brain this evening! East coast deadlines tend to sneak up on me. ❤️

      Like

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