I was twenty-seven when I took ownership of my first class of impressionable sixth graders. Those twenty-three minds were a veritable blank canvas ready for my pedagogical feather to tickle their intellects and break up the ground of their mixed metaphors.
Everything progressed perfectly until Fate took a sick day during second semester. One of my fellow elementary professors broke the news to me like this:
“All of your students have to give a valentine to everyone else in their class.”
Even now I think my response was genius.