Sunday, July 13, 2014

Kid Archetypes 2: Wait there are more.

Kids are way fun. I have a fantastic time teaching them.
 I also have strange experiences where it seems like I meet the same kid over and over again in one form or another. Here are some more types that show up routinely.

1. The Survivalist
 Somehow kids have this eerie way of doing things that make you feel like you are catching flashbacks to humanity at the dawn of evolution.
Occasionally they bust out this primal and terrifying inclination towards violence.
It's in what they do. Whenever two kids play any type of imaginary game there is a quasi Hegelian master slave struggle. The dominant kid determines the make-believe reality. You can hear it if you listen - it sounds like this:
Kid 1: "I am a princess."
Kid 2: "No. You are an ugly stepsister. I am the only princess."
A primal struggle. A ruthless tribal community.

2. The Followers
 Have pledged their undying allegiance to some stronger and more obnoxious kid. I no kidding had this happen with one of my followers:
Me: Hey Matt that looks really cool.
Matt's overlord kid: "um...not really...actually Matt that doesn't look cool at all."
Me: * stunned silence

3. The "Awesome" Kid
Tag Line: Those who are great in their own eyes....are really annoying in every way.
 Awesome kid is the end all be all of human life as we know it. Awesome kid reads faster than everyone else, has built more Lego sets than are currently in existence, and has ridden every roller-coaster (despite being under the height limit for them - apparently Disneyland just looks at them and says, "screw those potential million dollar injury lawsuits, this kid is so cool we just have to let him ride Indiana Jones." ).
No one does anything better than awesome kid.
If Mark saw a movie yesterday then Awesome kid saw it twice.
I have noticed something fascinating about these kids- they don't see their absurdly fanciful claims as lying. On occasion I have ended up in a conversation like this:
Me: "hmm are you sure it's true that a narwhal-shark jumped through a rainbow at your pool party?
Them: "Yes."
Me: "You aren't making any of that up?"
Them: "I'm not making it up."
They are dedicated to their story.
I believe that this is because they think they are telling the truth.
 Their little thought process goes like this:
            I am better than everyone else.
            Being better than others means doing cooler things than them.
            Sooo If anyone did something cool I must have done more of it (and or done it better)
            Mary went snorkeling on Catalina Island this weekend.
            Clearly I must have done something cooler - since I am cooler than Mary.
            Thusly : I went scuba diving in the middle of shark frenzy.
Awesome kid proceeds to believe wholeheartedly that they have in fact gone scuba diving amidst a shark frenzy. Other kids give Awesome kid a look that says, "um- yeah. right."

4. The Actual Awesome Kid
Is awesome. Doesn't stick it in your face. 
See How Carter finished the assignment and then went on to answer the questions about it without loudly announcing to the class that he was the first one finished? He rocks. He finished this section five minutes ago and went on to the next thing without reminding the whole class that he is wonderful.
You know what to do after you are done "awesome" kid - we have been doing the same thing for weeks now. I see your game. 

Actual awesome kid facts:
Context: kid building a rainbow house, I notice it is in Roy G. Biv order.
Me: "I appreciate your attention to the differences in wavelength which we refer to as the color spectrum."
Kid: "Thanks."

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