Miss Night's Marbles

Musings, mumbles, marvels, and sometimes mockery, live from kindergarten.

Miss Night Mutters. Literally.

on 14 November, 2014

First: WOW.

My last post, from just a few days ago —  Dear Parent: About THAT Kid… — has gone viral. 1.3 million hits and counting. It has been featured on the Washington Post education blog, and will soon appear on a few other sites, as well. I’m sharing this, not to blow my own horn, but rather, to THANK all of you, who helped that happen. For a blizzard of reasons, that post has hit a nerve. I am so honoured and touched by the stories that have been shared in the comments, and by the personal e-mails so many of you have sent me. Thank you so much for sharing your stories, for connecting with me and one another, and for spreading that post the full length and breadth of social media in all its forms. Wow. You guys are amazing. A million readers, and all through “organic spread” (which means, I have learned, that there was no paid promotion of the piece). Just you all, spreading it via digital word of mouth. Do you know how awesome that is?

Part of the attention that the post has drawn came in the form of a radio interview that I did today, and while it makes me feel a little bit naked-on-the-internet to share my full real name and school here (where I have always been semi-anonymous), I wanted to share it with you. The host asks some questions that have come up in many of the comments on the blog, and I was so grateful to have the opportunity to answer them.


Miss Night Mutters. Literally.

So, there you have it: my ACTUAL voice, amplifying our collective voice, about being kind, fair, respectful, and compassionate to ALL the children and families in our care.

Thank you guys.  SO MUCH.

And, coming soon, by your request: a follow-up Dear Parent letter, about how teachers are looking after YOUR child in the classroom, when YOUR child is not THAT child.

Love and so many blessings, friends. You amaze me.


Miss Night


9 Responses to “Miss Night Mutters. Literally.”

  1. constance says:

    You have elequently expressed the perspective of every good teacher. Thank you! There are many out there who do not receive the appreciation and respect they deserve!

  2. Marcy Hanson says:

    I read THAT child as I sat in the parking lot of my child’s elementary school, waiting to go in and talk to the Principal (again) about his recent (and first) in-school suspension. To say your post made me cry would be an understatement. See, all my kids are adopted-the oldest 3 came to us from Foster Care and my son, THAT kid-he has PTSD and attachment issues. Each day is a struggle for my 7 year old, and it breaks our hearts and terrifies us all at once. For the first time we have a Principal willing to be the teacher that you are. And we are so thankful. And thank you. For being a voice from teachers to other parents. Blessings to you.

  3. Mary Hardt says:

    Thank you so much for this post and the earlier one about THAT child! They really touched my heart.

  4. Jaime says:

    When I was five years old, my mother wrote a poem, naming me her “Rainbow Child.” My vibrant moods, from joy and laughter to peaceful and pensive, brought her awe and light up her life…yet, always, the storm clouds hover near. It wasn’t until after she died and I was in my 20s that I found the poem tucked into my baby book. While my own behavior wasn’t indicative of That Child, I certainly appreciate the struggle. The worst thing anyone can say is “You KNOW better.” Usually, That Child *does* know better, but they are so desperate, so helpless against the storm inside, so excited to share, so empathetic to the rest of the class that it cannot be contained and it leaks out.

    Today, I am a partner of a Rainbow Child, and no, that isn’t a typo. We are a team, trying to navigate discipline and punishment, praise and criticism, enthusiasm and frustration. I recognize so much of ME in his struggle, and it is absolutely heart-wrenching to see him struggle. I am so grateful that our teachers and school have been very supportive and gracious in addressing concerns. Perhaps he is labeled as That Child, but they provide so much care and love and comfort and confidence, both to my child and me as parent.

    Thank you for acknowledging how much teachers DO to help. To the fellow parents, please know that YOUR child receives the same individual notice and consideration; it may be discussed through words of praise and pleasure and perhaps is not remarkable to you…but please know, your Teacher does look after your child.

  5. Susanne says:

    I read the post and shared it before I even realized that YOU wrote it! It hit so close to home as a grade 1 teacher and spoke the truth so well. I was the teacher you contacted after the major flood in High River to organize shoe boxes. I am not surprised that you are the author as it is evident that you have a passion for teaching and you truly care.
    Way to go!

    • Miss Night says:

      Oh, Susanne, this means so much! Thank you so much. The shoe boxes for High River was one of my most favourite projects ever! So much love and gratitude for your kind words.

  6. Monica says:

    I feel bad for the adults and cHildreth on all sides of this. My husband’s twin was handicapped. In those days, bullying was accepted, and kids were told to grow thicker skin. So My husband became “that kid” to protect his brother, and I deal daily with his over defensiveness and lack of self esteem from him not getting the help he needed. I was the kid struggling with mental illness who didn’t get help till in my 20s, because I locked myself in my own world for my protection, so no one saw the quiet good girl struggling. My son is the kid whose needs are often not met, because teachers are overwhelmed dealing with “those kids”…whom my son has a special gift with, so is often partnered with them because he can at least get something out of them that even his teachers cant. And I taught behavior disorders for 5 years, just me and one aide with 12 of those kids 3 periods a day, and 3 periods a day with them in “regular” classes trying to teach them to deal with the “normal” world. It’s hard for EVERYONE. The fact is, though, is its harder for “that kid” than any other, because there is no worse feeling than being trapped in your own head with no way to tell people why your acting that way or what they can do to help. So instead of being mad that the teacher is taking time from your easy kid to help them, try volunteering or even just thank the kid for trying at the slightly less bad day

    • shirley robert says:

      yes,it is sad.I had a son in school with adhd and it was’nt dealt with the way it should have been.These kids deal with an awful lot in school.They are bullied,ganged up on,made to feel shame from some of the teachers,I know,my son went to hell and back.They,some of them treated him so awful.I cry even now thinking of some of the things they made him do,turning his desk towards a wall,put him in a small cubicle,and the kids saw this as a big joke.I know teachers have a lot to do ,but making it harder for “THAT kid to cope,should’nt be one of them.This happened 40 yrs ago,and I am still sad about the way he was treated

  7. Faige Meller says:

    It was an amazing post and as I shared on a tweet came at such a fortuitous time as I was getting ready for my parent teacher conference. Today most are over and almost finished writing reflections on my blog about my conversations with my parents. Once again thank you for sharing your insights. Faige @dubioseducator

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