I'm in the midst of testing second graders this week and it's getting a little monotonous, to be honest. I test them individually and they each have to do the same thing. Fortunately it's only a few minutes for each child, but it can still sometimes be rough to make it a little exciting.
I start out by talking to each child for a minute or so. A few of my questions have been, "So how's second grade going this year?" "What do you think of Mrs. (insert teacher's name here) ?" "Would you like to stay in second grade again next year or go on to third?" "Any plans for the summer?" "Do you know where the library is?" "Do you think that mom or dad or grandma might take you to the library to get some books this summer?"
One little girl was extremely talkative and she would have told me her family's deepest, darkest secrets if I would have asked her to. She's as cute as a button, but even told me that her mom and dad tell her that she talks too much. I told her that it was okay, because I tend to talk too much too.
After the little chat session, I tell the child that they will be reading a short story for me. I tell them that while they are reading, I'll be taking notes, and my notes won't mean anything to them, but will mean a lot to me and their teacher. I also tell them that if they have trouble with a word, I'll tell them the word, so their fluency remains consistent. (Yes, they know what that means. I tell them from the beginning of the year that we will be working on fluency, and what it is and what we'll do to work on it.)
Then I tell them to read carefully because when they're finished reading, I'm going to ask them to tell me about what they read.
The story is called The Tent and it's very simple. The main character's name is Maria.
This talkative little girl that I spoke about earlier began reading the story to me. When she got to the name "Maria" she hesitated only a second and said "Mariah" very matter-of-factly.
I corrected her and said it was "Maria" and then said, "You must be thinking of Mariah Carey."
She said, "She's on my softball team!"
And that's when I lost it and just burst out laughing.
Somehow I just can't see Mariah Carey playing second base with dirt all over her, bubble gum in her mouth, and pounding her fist into her glove.
Then I told the little girl that Mariah Carey was a singer and I don't think she plays softball. The little girl started to giggle and said, "There's a girl named Mariah on my softball team and she's in Mrs. Martin's room! That's who I was thinking about."
It just really struck me as hilarious and I laughed about it for the rest of the day.