Mysterious Joe

I have an empty desk in my classroom.  27 students, 28 desks.  Most teachers keep an extra one on had for that middle of the year transfer.  I mostly just need to have symmetrical desk groups in even numbers because I am weird.

Anyway, at the beginning of the year some of the boys asked me, “Who sits here?”

“That’s Joe’s desk,” I replied.  That day a legend was born.

Apparently a small group of boys has been generating a rather creative back story for Joe, including why he never comes to school.  (I just found out that his last name is O’Egghead.) Last week he started turning in writing.  You read that right….last week he started turning in writing.  Silly nonsensical meanderings of fifth grade boys testing the waters of humorous writing.

I must say I was genuinely pleased.  It was strange, but funny, so I read it out loud to the class.  Every boy in the room was in fits of giggles.  The girls all stared at me, then at each other, then had their first collective “oh brother” moment.  Since that day Joe has become one of the most productive writers in the class, turning in several short pieces a day.  They are clearly authored by different students, although a core group does most of the work. Most are done during recess, which I know because 5th grade boys are not very sneaky when they are trying to sneak yellow draft paper out of the writing center.

I’m fairly certain that, at this rate, Joe will have one of the largest and most creative writing portfolios in the class.  Maybe I should write a note to Mr. and Mrs. O’Egghead to let them know how well their son is doing in my room?


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2 Responses to Mysterious Joe

  1. Tara says:

    This is priceless…that portfolio and those memories will be with you for years, giving rise to many a quiet smile at the sweet joie de vivre that is the essence of adolescence give the right atmosphere. Kudos to their teacher, who has a great sense of humor of her own!

  2. Michelle says:

    Love it! Love it! Love it! How awesome that the boys took the idea of “Joe” and ran with it! You can’t complain when they are taking time out of their recess to write! What a great, feel good story. I agree with Tara too – glad you can play along!

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