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03 December 2004: That's What It's All About (1 of 5 )
The other day, I got a telephone call from a former student. Frank was in my fourth grade class last year, and one of those kids that you keep in a seperate emotional compartment than most of your students. He is intelligent, underperforming, neglected, artistic, popular, and a bully. Frank was for the most part raising himself, but demonstrated a longing for parental control. When I told him to bathe, wash his face, and brush his teeth every day, he did. Nearly the only time he ever did his homework was when he chose to stay after school to hang out. When he called, it was just to tell me about life at the school I'd moved away from. He told me about the trouble he'd been into and out of, his teacher, his friends, and movies and comic books he really appreciated. We talked for half an hour, and I was thrilled. After we hung up, I spent some time considering the ways that students love their teachers.