“So, please introduce yourself and say why you want to be in Writing Club.”
We worked our way around the circle.
“I’m here because I want to finish writing a story I started last year.”
“I’m here because I really like writing.”
Then a student started giggling and announced, “I’m here to write about Chicken Nuggets!”
Multiple students dissolved into gales of laughter. After order was restored, we continued. A student started to introduce himself by his given name, and his friend interrupted him, “No, you mean you’re Timmy!” she cried.
“Oh, yeah,” he said, “I’m Timmy!” and laughed maniacally.
“Chicken Nugget!!” another student called out, accompanied by more laughter from some, and confused and/or annoyed looks from others.
And so it went on.
I made it through the hour. Barely. I spent most of my time redirecting, reprimanding and regretting my decision to have an after-school Writing Club. My only bright spot was that somehow quite a few students actually wrote to the prompt and had something to show for their independent writing time. I have no idea how, given my largely unsuccessful efforts to lower the volume to a reasonable level.
Now I’m home, drinking wine, and regrouping. I didn’t have the energy to go to my own Writing Group, which made me even sadder and grumpier.
Sometimes you just have to tell it like it is.