While driving from one activity to another the other night, Pink Floyd’s Another Brick in the Wall came on over the radio. Tommy sat straight up in his seat. “Did those kids just say ‘we don’t need no education?” But before I could answer, he hushed me, “Wait…what did that guy say?”
“Teachers leave them kids alone.”
I thought his eyes were going to pop out of his head. And the grin he had stretching from ear to ear, oh lord I am in trouble, ya’all.
Tommy is my free-spirit and sort of a rebel. Like most 9-year-old boys, he doesn’t like school. And he’s not afraid to tell anyone and everyone about it. His dislikes range from the typical complaint of getting up early and having to sit still for hours at a time to not being able to “experience life” while he’s “trapped” in that building. He also often questions the curriculum, asking me how often a day I or his father need to know what an adverb is in our adult life. And don’t even mention Common Core around this kid. During a parent-teacher conference, his teacher pulled out a couple worksheets they’d recently done in class. On the bottom right hand corner where it says, “Common Core”, he scratched out Core and wrote above it, “Crap”. When his teacher asked him why he did that he said, “because it is.” She replied, “Well you know it is, and I know it is, but we still can’t write it on this paper, okay.” He also questions authority. Not so much mine and his father’s (I’m sure that will be coming soon enough), but ever other adult and of course the government. (They, after all, are the reason he’s stuck in school for 6 crappy hours.)
He listened to the song very intently the rest of the drive home and when it was over he nodded his head and say, “That was great. I’m gonna have to teach all my friends that song so we can sing it to the teachers. Can we look it up on Youtube?”
Fantastic. I have raised a shit-starter. I should probably start buying poster-board for this protest signs now.
When we got home I checked his book bag for homework and love letters like I usually do. Luckily, I found neither, but his yearbook came in! When I saw these shots of my son, I laughed myself silly, and thought I’d share them with you. (Faces of other children have been blanked out since I didn’t ask their parents for permission).