Monday, March 29, 2010

I'm Awesome and My Teachers Were Clueless

I had a discussion with Austin about how his attitude toward school
SUCKSleaves something to be desired. Austin shot back that I'm a procrastinator too. I told him he was grounded until he's 40.

But it got me thinking. Is his laziness hereditary? Did I pass on procrastination genes to him? Nah, I'm sure I wasn't that bad in high school. I mean, I remember my mom complaining daily about "my attitude problem". I know I heard the phrases, "if only you'd apply yourself", and "if only you'd work up to your potential" on an hourly basis. But I couldn't have been that bad in high school.

So, I searched through my box of papers, stories, art projects and such from when I was in school. I expected to find some evidence of my lack of enthusiasm for academia when I got to my high school report cards, but I was fully unprepared to see such negative reports starting in kindergarten! Kindergarten, for crying out loud!

This first one is really faded so I'll translate for you. It says, "Dawn has been having some difficulty in her peer relationships as she tends to want to lead and make all the decisions."

In my defense, it's not my fault everyone else was stupid and wrong. Someone had to lead that group of five-year-olds in the right direction! Sheesh! Clearly she was just jealous of my highly coveted leadership skills.

Now, let's move on to second grade, shall we?

"Dawn needs to cooperate with others without resenting the correction."

I would've had no problems cooperating if they'd just done things my way, which was the right way, of course. It seems obvious to me that everyone else had the problem.

Moving on to third grade.

"Socializing continues to take up too much of Dawn's time which could be put to better use."

Better use is really an objective term, don't you think? My teacher may have thought that memorizing my times tables was a better use of my time. I say, "That's what calculators are for." All that talking and story telling was really just research and practice for this blog.

"Dawn needs to continue to work on improving her work habits. Alot less socializing would give her the time needed to complete her work."

Yeah, yeah, again with the socializing. I'm telling ya, it was research! And my teacher really had no room to talk here since she thought "alot" is a word.

Now, let's see how I did in fourth grade. Surely, there has to be a good report somewhere in here!

"Dawn has made a lot of friends this years and has gained much more self-confidence. She has shown good progress in fourth grade. I have especially enjoyed her very creative stories. She needs to work on the above checked areas next year. Have a fun summer!"

Finally! A teacher with the good sense to enjoy my "very creative stories"! Why'd she have to go and ruin it by checking assumes responsibility, observes school rules, listens attentively, works steadily at a task, and finishes assignments? I know! I bet she didn't want to make the other students jealous with her love of my stupendous creative writing so she had to make up something negative to balance it out. Yeah, that's gotta be it!

Let's see how I did in fifth grade.

"Dawn is working hard this year. Occasionally, she is not prepared for class, and she may snap at her classmates, but we have discussed both of these topics and I am hopeful that these incidents will occur less frequently as time progresses."

Yeah, well, I'll tell you why I snapped at my classmates! Because they were stupid and annoying! It's hard putting up with such idiocy. How can I be expected to learn when the people sitting around me are saying their buttered popcorn scratch 'n' sniff stickers are better than my puppy puffy stickers? How can I concentrate when the girls at my table are flipping their beaded ribbon barrettes around and making irritating noise? How can I even see the board when the boy sitting in front of me is blinding me with his Mork striped suspenders? Yeah, that's what I thought! Case dismissed.

"Congratulations to Dawn and the Damalas family on her selection to continue in the Young Author's Contest. That's great!"

Oh yeah! In your face! I rock! I was selected to go on in a contest I don't even remember. But I'm sure it was the highest honor! In fact, it was such a high honor, my teacher couldn't even bring herself to find anything bad to say about me. My awesome writing prevailed! Finally!

"Dawn, I will always remember your contributions to our reading discussions. You always seemed to have the answer I had in mind! Carry that talent with you into 6th grade and you'll do a great job! Carry a smile too!"

Yes! Two good reports in a row! Finally, a teacher who appreciates my brilliance and understands that geniuses such as I, sometimes need to put the stupid people in their place. What? No, I am not reading between the lines! That's what it says!

After those glowing reports, things must go well for me in sixth grade! Let's see.

"Again, Dawn has produced basically good work this grading period. A greater emphasis on listening attentively to the teacher and organizing time wisely would result in even better grades."

Clearly, she had spoken to my mother before writing that comment. Just never satisfied. Always wanting me to do better. What happened to those glory days of fifth grade? "Basically good work" Humph!

"I can repeat what I've stated before. If Dawn listens carefully and follows directions, she does a good job academically. (She also avoids some of the "0"s she receives when she doesn't!) She has the basic skills and ability to achieve in junior high. It's up to her!"

It was up to me. All up to me. And I remember which path I chose. I decided to stop reading my old report cards at this point because I'm pretty sure it all went downhill from there. And now you know all about me. I'm a bossy, talkative person who likes to lead and make all the decisions. I don't use my time wisely and sometimes I don't complete assignments at all. I can tell a pretty creative story, but in the end, I guess I'm a pain the butt. Thanks to everyone for putting up with me anyway!


Quixotic said...

I happen to think all creative geniuses (genii??) have report cards like this. Or at least, I'm desperately hoping that that's it - otherwise you've stolen my childhood report cards...

Anonymous said...

This is making me laugh so much.

I have a nine year old boy in year 4 and so much of what you've said is what his teachers have said about him and what mine said about me.

My son's grandmother already thinks he would make a great author. And I'm a technical writer. If the kid turns out to be as half as talented as you with the writing and the discipline it takes to do that I will be a very proud Mum.

And if he turns into a tech writer, weeeell that's writing too. Just different.

Hope all other parts of your life are improving Dawn.

Original Vegemite Girl

Jen@Scrapingirl said...

Your teachers were creative in their writing. All I got was "she talks too much" on EVERY single one. Where's the creativity, gosh darnit? I'm not kidding. I've read all of them, and that's what they say. So, I guess I can't yell at my kids for talking during school. Well, I can, cuz I'm their teacher. Crazy homeschoolers. :)

joanne lendaro said...


My report cards always said "talks too much" and I still do.....

Janet said...

These report cards are great! I wish that I had all of mine from elementary school. Some pictures from each grade would be fun to see!

Jennifer said...

So basically what you are saying is that Austin is just like you?

Six-Pack Momma said...

What about first grade? You must have been an angel in first grade, right? A good teacher that could see your real potential?

That just proves it was all the teachers' inability to handle a genius mind.

Wendy in Idaho said...

Love the updated pics on the left hand side! But it is kind of sad to see how time is flying by and how much older your kids are....

Anonymous said...

Hey Dawn,

Like usual, you never cease to get me to seriously laugh out loud. Thanks!

I was a talker in school but I was a sneakie one. I passed on the talking gene to my kids too. So, when they come home to tell me that they got busted for talking, I really don't get on them.

I wanted to just let you know that I am praying for you today. I saw the new design of your blog (which looks awesome!) and I know you are in a new life stage.

How are your kids doing with all the new changes in their life? Please let your fellow blog friends know how we can pray. I'm not looking to get nosey, just looking to lift you and your kids up during this time.

Hugs to you!!
~Lisa Kiesling, Dallas, Texas

Rachel said...

completely unrelated, although i know my report cards looked like that too - with a lot of 'doesn't complete work on time' and 'spends too much time daydreaming'... but i have to say that my daughter is very disappointed that you changed your pictures. she loved austin's old picture and anytime she saw that i was on your blog, she immediately said, 'i want to see the boy with the blue tongue!' haha! AND smooth on the absence of the 30 something (and lack of replacement mentioning of age)! ;)

AlanaM said...

"How can I be expected to learn when the people sitting around me are saying their buttered popcorn scratch 'n' sniff stickers are better than my puppy puffy stickers? How can I concentrate when the girls at my table are flipping their beaded ribbon barrettes around and making irritating noise?"

Were you and I in the same fifth grade (circa 1983ish?) I had a sticker collection and wore those silly barrettes. Still have both somewhere, along with my own report cards. Love seeing the old style report cards.

Vincent Navarino said...

My report cards said basically if I paid more attention I could do a lot better. I got A's and B's in what interested me. Perhaps it should have read "I feel badly for making this class boring and Vincent shouldn't have to suffer so I'm giving him an A or B".

Teacher's fault not mine. Move on lady.

cyn said...

I also got the "Cyndi talks too much" comment, and I always sat next to the teachers because that way I would stop talking (as if). The funny thing is, as much as I love talking, I ended up with very shy boys (maybe because they're boys, right, yeah that has to be it). So the comments on their report cards were that if they participated more the teachers would be able to see if they could apply what they've learned (sigh!)

faithlessone said...

Most of my report cards say something along the lines of "Emily is a good student, but needs to stop being terrified all the time." Since Reception (UK equivalent of Kindergarten) I was always scared of speaking in class unless I got something wrong.

The really funny thing was in U6th (High School Senior) Latin, when my report actually said, "Emily is a good student, but needs to learn when to shut up." Hehe.

homestead mommy said...

I started following your blog about 7 months ago. Right after I read 'Because I said so!' (Loved it by the way!) Can't wait for your new one..SSO? When is it supposed to be coming out? I am dying to read it.

Thanks for all the great laughs!

Jennie said...

My mom says my report cards and parent teacher conferences said that I was also social, but I'd finish my work really fast, then I'd go help my friends finish their work so we could play/talk/etc.

And all through high school, I also got the "if you'd work a little harder" "you've got so much potential..."

Sandy in Illinois said...

The comments aren't so bad. Mine from 1st grade about 1949 says that I need to learn how to use my handkerchief properly. How is that for a comment? Now days it would say needs to learn how to use hand sanitizer or something like that.

Anonymous said...

Ha, that really made me laugh. Hope you don't mind if I steal that idea and hunt out my old school reports! :)

Anonymous said...

Hey Dawn!

This is for Original Vegemite Girl - I'm a technical writer too. SOMEONE has to tell everyone else what to do and how to do it correctly.

Can you guess what my school report cards said?!

Sandy in Tucson

Rick said...

Dawn is a packrat. Who keeps all their report cards? Answer: Dawn.

Sorry to read about Savannah on Facebook. I am still praying.

Dawn said...

Noooo! No, I'm not a packrat. Quite the opposite, actually. Oftentimes I find myself wishing I had something I threw out or gave away. My mom saved one small box of school stuff and she passed it off on me. It resides in my attic. My sister, on the other hand.... Yikes!

Megryansmom said...

High Five! I was talkative too, but all that criticism by the evil nuns has left me a little shy as an adult. Stupid nuns!

Donna said...

This has really made me laugh.
I got almost identical grade cards as you.
Let me tell you troubles started in Kindergarten.
I was always put into the 'paint' closet for talking and I told all the kids that if my teacher did it again she would regret it.
Long story short....she put me in there and when I could see in there from the little light under the door, I took all the finger paints and mixed them all up with many colors. Later in the afternoon she got the paints out and screamed. LOL. My mom got a call to come right away to the school to take me home.
Yep, I got kicked out of Kindergarten for a few days.
And the really hard part was that my teacher and my mom were best friends......hehehehee

Mary said...

Love your old report cards, don't know if many of mine are around but I remember being told I talk too much too. What did they know anyway :)

Jen said...

We love you, Dawn! :P Btw, how's Savannah?

Much More Than Mommy said...

The bright spot: look where that creative story-telling got you! And as for being bossy... Well, I think God was just preparing you for being a mom of SIX!!!

debi9kids said...

OMGOSH! Too funny! I just love that you still have all of your old report cards! (I think I have one of mine)

mandyb said...

hahaha i was told i talked too much.... and now i am a kindergarten teacher!!!! hahahahaha

also LOVE the new photo

Sara said...

I can't believe you have so many old report cards!

Also, love the updated pictures!

Nat said...

Just a quick comment...
First of all, good for you for not staying in the box they wanted you to. :-)

But the one thing that caught my eye was the "you need to socialize less" suggestion..
You see, I'm a homeschooler and the number one complaint/question we hear about homeschoolers is "How are your kids going to socialize???? They NEED to socialize!!!" And now I have proof that socialization is NOT the highest value in public school either!! LOL!

Thank you, Dawn. :-)

MamaLemma said...

Oh, Dawn, how did you get into my box of school stuff in my house on the East Coast? ;-)

I, too, had report cards that looked just like that. Truth is, I'm still like that, but luckily, I've found a job in which those talents are beneficial. (I am a Business Analyst at a software company; I talk to customers to find out what they want from our software, and then write software requirements which tell the developers what to program.) I also show real signs of ADD, and think I probably would have been diagnosed with it had doctors recognized it in the 1970s. My kids (11 yo girl and 7 yo boy) have similar traits. Glad I'm not alone in this! --Sheryl

Anonymous said...

I can't believe you have all those old report cards! I'm pretty sure I don't have any report cards from my childhood. I don't think my mom has them, either. She's not very sentimental.

David said...

Nothing to do with this post (sorry - SSO?)but are you still using the neti-pot thing you mentioned ages ago? I too find the idea of pouring salt water up my nose revolting/terrifying but I have yet another cold & would like to rediscover breathing...

geelizzie said...

Did you share these with Austin? He might have a better outlook about the whole school thing if he sees that you had your moments, too. Plus, being able to laugh at mom is always fun.

Jennifer Foster said...

FUN-NY stuff!!!!

Kim said...

Is alot a word in America? Last time I checked, they were two individual words. Great to see a teacher combine the two.

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