Class Clown Versus Parent-Teacher Conference

Class Clown and Parent-Teacher Conference Stacey GustafsonParent-teacher conferences are as unsettling as being attacked on a city street by a flock of geese overdosed on Ex-Lax. You hope you don’t get hit with something you weren’t expecting.

When our son brought home a crumpled-up reminder note about his upcoming parent-teacher conference, my husband said to me, “Should we be concerned?”

“Nah,” I said with a laugh. “We’ve got nothing to fear. Our little guy’s fun loving, smart, and inquisitive. He’s right on track.”

I was certain his bubbly kindergarten teacher would load on the compliments with a flash of her professionally whitened teeth and say, “Your son is fabulous. A model student.”

This will be a piece of cake.

I prepared a list of questions for Ms. Smiley like, “Is our child working to the best of his ability? Is he a visual, auditory, or tactile learner?”

Parent-Teacher Conference

We peeked at the parent-teacher conference list taped on the classroom door and confirmed it was the correct room at the right time. My husband and I entered the classroom with a grin and took a seat at our boy’s tiny desk. The perky, young teacher beamed down at us from her stool, hands folded in her lap.

Let the bragging begin.

With a serious face, she said, “I love your son’s energy. He is certainly enthusiastic but…”

No buts. What do you mean but?

What’s an Armpit Fart?

She continued, “But yard duty volunteers are concerned he’s causing a commotion at recess. Personally, I embrace his enthusiasm.”


“What’s he doing?”

“He has single-handily taught the whole kindergarten class how to armpit fart. No worries. I think boys should be boys,” she said with a giggle.

Then, a woman with a deep voice at the doorway cleared her throat and said, “When you’re finished here, do you mind dropping by the gymnasium?” and scooted off with a flash of spiky, black hair.

“Who’s that?” I asked his teacher.

“Your son’s physical education instructor, Ms. Wagner. Not sure what she wants,” she said with a twist of her ponytail. “As I was saying, he’s a pleasure to have in class. Mom and Dad, you’re doing a good job.”

You bet we are!

More Parent-Teacher Conference

I winked at my husband and gripped his hand as we strutted down the hallway to the gym. The teacher straightened the exercise mats and flagged us over to her corner office.

“Thanks for coming by,” she said, running a hand through her hair. “I want to start out by saying that I enjoy having your son in class but I’m concerned about his safety and the well-being of the other kids.”

Woman, what are you talking about?

“He’s the biggest boy in class and I’m afraid he’s going to hurt the other children.”

“What’s he doing?” I said with a frown.

“Let me give you an example. Right now the class is doing gymnastics, practicing log rolls and somersaults on the mats. Yesterday, he rolled across his mat, knocked down the other children, then rolled over their bodies and out the gymnasium door,” she said rubbing the back of her neck. “We’re just concerned about his safety.”

Oh my God! Like a human army tank!

Get Your Kid Under Control

“I don’t want to take up anymore of your time,” she said, pushing back her chair and standing up. “Please try to get your kid under control.”

With a weak handshake, we left the gym, our heads held in shame. As we rushed down the hallway to get the hell out of there, a tall, bearded man with fashionable glasses blocked our way. “Glad I bumped into you,” he said, looking us up and down. “I’m your son’s music teacher, Mr. Thompson. Can you stop by for thirty seconds?”

“Uh…sure,” we said in unison.

Oh boy, our son is a musical prodigy!

Once in the music room, we plopped down on the metal risers next to the teacher. “First, I want to tell you that your child has a very high level of energy.”

“Okay,” I said, sneaking a look at my husband.

“He’s disrupting the class,” he blurted out.

“Can you give us an example?”

“Let me show you,” he said as he hoisted himself up in true dramatic fashion. We stared, eyes wide and mouth opened, as a 6’3” giant hopped around the classroom like a one-legged kangaroo and slapped his butt with wooden drumsticks.

We departed the room holding onto each other, unable to suppress the laughter any longer. I glanced over my shoulder and spied the teacher as he chuckled and dabbed his eyes with a tissue.

Geez, our son, the five-year-old class clown!

Class Clown and Parent-Teacher Conference Stacey GustafsonLooking for a good read?
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