Merry Christmas….to you, not me…

Happy Holidays!!!

I know a whole bunch of things annoy people about the holidays.  All the singing, partying, cheerfulness and joy, honoring the birth of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior can really get you down.  I try to recognize that the spirit of giving doesn’t fill everyone but I get a little annoyed at the expectations some people have around this time of the year – mainly, my students and their parents.

I teach first grade in a poor neighborhood and the sense of entitlement that some people have disgusts me.  My daughter was born on Christmas and a really good friend (one of my best) was born on Christmas Eve meaning my money is already spent on people I love so on the last day of school before break, I showed up to school giftless, I can’t afford to play Santa to other folks’ kids.  I remember being excited about giving my teachers tiny tokens of my appreciation: a picture frame, candy, a tin of those butter cookies – whatever my father brought home from Walgreens the night before.  I decided to give the kids a pizza party instead of buying them a gift.  I don’t expect gifts from my kids, their parents can barely afford to buy them gifts.  Each child was supposed to bring in $1 for the “party” and I spent $40 of my own money on drinks and snacks for them.  Wouldn’t you know it, that wasn’t good enough for the ungrateful heathens.  This is what they said:

“This is all we’re getting?”

“I like my other teachers better, they bought the whole class presents”

“What did you get me for Christmas?” to which I responded “Well, what did you get me?”  The little sucker answered “Nothing” and I said, “I got you the same thing.”

And my absolute favorite, “My mama gave me this bag to put some extra food from the party in.”

Now I’m not mad at the kids.  They’re only six and seven and they don’t know any better.  I blame their ignorant parents and their messed up sense of entitlement.  I  don’t owe your child anything but an education.  Schools have become social agencies.  We feed them two free meals a day, provide students with clothes, health care, free eye glasses, and anything else parents decide they need.  I understand that many of my students and their families are disadvantaged, but since when does that become a reason the take advantage of my generosity.  I can’t afford to be the parent of 25 extra children.  I have a kid at home.  Next Christmas, I think I’ll stay home on the last day of school and play with my kid.

Merry Christmas…..to you, not me…..

BTW I got a tin of popcorn from one kid which the other students asked me to share with them.

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2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Haki
    Dec 20, 2009 @ 15:47:16

    humbug.

    Reply

  2. Kimberly Land
    Dec 20, 2009 @ 19:16:16

    This is actually very sad…It hurts me to read this because these kids will not learn any differently. Their expectations will only increase and they will soon expect larger things-like jobs, cars, etc….so sad…

    here’s my blog on life as a graduate student in OT school. I’m in Costa Rica right now for classes. I return to teh States in January:
    http://myotstudentblog.blogspot.com

    Reply

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