Sunday, September 30, 2007

Caution: Staples Ahead

How could I have forgotten? I sent the stapler around the classroom and asked the students to staple together their torn-out workbook pages from the reading workbook. No further directives. So I should not have been surprised when I received packets of paper with three staples down the left-hand side or one in each upper corner. (My least favorite is the one in the middle of the page. What good does THAT do anyone? You can't even turn the pages!). The worst part about this is that I knew better. Anyone who's been teaching for longer than a week knows you can't just send around a stapler and expect proper results! It doesn't matter how many packets with one staple neatly placed in the upper left-hand corner the kids have received over the course of their lives. It hasn't sunk in that THAT'S how you staple together papers. This, apparently, is something that must be taught, like other mundane September tasks taught to you by your fourth grade teacher.

Many kids have the need to staple their papers like a book. Oh, and the more staples, the better. Stapling must be fun to those who don't have a lot of experience with stapling, I guess. Ever since I started teaching, I've observed that kids are fascinated by stapling...and tape...oooh, and White Out...and highlighters...and post-it notes. All of these things need to be handled with extreme caution when working with children.

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