Recently in class we were talking basic geography as we do every day for about ten minutes per. Some kid didn’t know where Washington State was on a map. Another kid thought there were fifty-two states in our country.
The other fourth grade teacher and myself always are quoting the fabulous cult classic, Office Space, and whenever a kid says something dumb we transform ourselves into Bill Lumberg, and say “Ooooh, yeah, see, that’s gonna be a problem…”
I guess I assume too much. But isn’t it fair to assume that a ten-year-old can locate the state they live in on a map…especially if said student has lived in said state for most if not all of their entire existence? Yeah…I do believe I should be able to assume as much.
Nevertheless, after that eye-opening embarassment, I requested that students learn all fifty state names, and also be able to locate them on a map. It just seems that familiarizing yourself with the general make-up of your country isn’t asking too much.
Today, after school, some mom called up. “You know there’s fifty-two states, not fifty, right?” I assumed she was joking. Ya see…there’s my problem…I was assuming again. I should’ve learned my lesson…apparently I’m still a novice in that area. I laughed, assuming she was just joshin’ me. (Transform to Bill Lumberg mode) Ooooh, yeah, see, that’s a problem, because as I soon deduced…she was not “just joshin’ me.” I couldn’t believe it. I wanted to say something completely inappropriate…yet as I wrote yesterday, I am now a professional…so I quickly composed myself.
“Why don’t you have your kid bring in the list of the fifty-two tomorrow, and I’ll check ‘em over…I could be wrong,” I said.
“Yeah, yah never know,” she chuckled, “cuz I know Hawaii was only just recently made a state…”
Ooooh, yeah, that’s gonna be sort of a problem, because Hawaii wa admitted to the union in 1959, which if I figure correctly was forty-seven years ago. Now I’m not sure what she considers recent, but if I wasn’t even alive yet…well…yeah.
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