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October 05, 2009


This blog was inspired by Steve Pilot's tribute  (http://www.funnyordie.com/blog/posts/30154) to probably the worst teacher ever allowed near a chalkboard. Here you go Steve- you warn teachers to be  careful who they pick on, because you never know who might get an opportunity to write about them in a Funny or Die blog… Well, little did your Mrs. Downs know, she was so bad she inspired a kid she never even taught to blog about her, also! 

You survived Steve! And with your sanity and humor intact!

The following is what I wrote as a response to Steve's blog:
I hadn't thought of it for years. His experience with Mrs. Downs and her opinion about Steve's artwork reminded me of the time my artwork caused a serious "placement issue" for me at the start of my distinguished scholary carreer . But not because the teacher was mean....she was ...well...just confused. As was the principal and school counseler.

My kindergarten teacher assigned us to draw a picture with a bird in it.  Like Steve, I too was drawing at an early age and LOVED to have this kind of schoolwork. Little did I know how much I upset the ballance of Grimes Elementary School.
My mother was called into speak to the teacher, principal, and counsler. I had NO idea what I did. The school thought there was something wrong with me. I obviously had a learning disability...after all- I was overweight and way too quiet. They asked me if I understood the project.

Yes I did! : "Draw a picture with a bird in it."
"And what is this?" as my teacher pointed to a very well drawn barn with trees and a tractor sitting in front of it. I remember being offended. "Well..um...that's a ..um  a barn." (It was not that bad  of a drawing ...was it? It had all the barn-like qualities needed, including a weather vane, stacks of hay, and a cow poking her head out of the big barn door!)

Now my mom knew what I did and how I thought...so she was smiling and she instantly realized it was the school administration with the learning disability.

The teacher said I was suppose to draw a bird.

"I DID!"

Very concerned and worried about my young brain...they asked me to draw another. So I did. And I drew it the same way- I marked a "V" up in the corner next to the one I put flying over my BEAUTIFUL barn.

It was a picture with a bird in it! Sheesh!

NONE of them understood until my mother explained to them that's how a bird looks  from a distance and in flight. My mother is also an artist and I watched her do it a million times. And it made sense to even my young mind that it looked like a bird...way...way...way..in the distance.

So my warning to teachers out there: Don't be too closed minded and remember that maybe...JUST MAYBE... a five year old has something to teach you. It's a give/give kind of thing.

And thank you Steve P for inspiring me to pick up the blogging pen again. I always think  of these great ideas to write about, but then let everyday life bog me down. You are funny and inspiring... qualities your Mrs. Downs obviously never understood.