I am completely flummoxed by the green, yellow, red, purple, pink behavior system that most public schools seem to have adopted these days.
When I was a kid in the 70’s we didn’t have backpacks, books, red folders, earbuds, Clorox wipes or sandwich bags to lug to school every day. Heck, I don’t even remember having a pencil, I’m assuming those we’re publicly funded. The behavior system was simple. Classroom chair, stand in the corner, principals office. I think that system pretty much worked.
Here’s the gist of the new color system
Upon arriving at school you’re assigned green (nice color, kind of Kermit like) but most likely you won’t get to keep Kermit status all day. Things happen. Voices get higher, giggles come out, shoes fall off, the desk won’t close, someone gets poked, feet start swinging…you get the picture. Kids being kids. So begins the fall from grace. Green becomes yellow, yellow becomes red and perhaps if a foot manages to stop swinging…redemption, back on green. If you happen to be having a particularly angelic day you might even climb high enough on Maslow’s hierarchy to achieve self-actualization which equals purple or pink (i’m not sure the what the difference is between these two) which in turn earns you tickets to win candy or a Chinese made plastic action figure.
As I’m writing this post the sheer lunacy becomes crystal clear. Our educators are spending at least a quarter of the day assigning and moving the color system around the class. This feels harder than fantasy football and more stupid than a presidential debate. Jimmy, Kate, and Lois are on green, Stanley’s under his desk, that’s a yellow, Pam stole Ian’s iPad to read Dr. Seuss, that’s a red. Stanley’s back in his seat, green. Thank goodness for Liam, he’s earned a pink (and 10 tickets) for pulling the lunch cart which our incident…and so it goes on and on and on. All. Freakin’. Day.
I think I’ll be green today
Is this the new aspiration for life achievement? As my kid was getting on the bus this morning she actually said, “I think I’ll be green today”. She didn’t say…I think I’ll be a doctor, or a vet or a NASA engineer or a Wharton School graduate today. Nope. “I think I’ll be green today”. I would have settled for “I think I’ll be Pinkie Pie today”, because that’s way more creative.
I get it (kind of)
Teachers have 25 students to keep on Kermit status which I’m sure is no easy task. But does the color system work? I don’t think so.
Apply this system to real life
Now that’s laughable. Imagine the behavior color system for last nights GOP debate. Ugh Jeb, you’re on red for talking out of turn. Ben Carson, you’re on pink for using your indoor voice, here’s a Donald Trump action figure for your shrine.
I think I’ll be plaid today or a paleontologist but I’m not being green, sorry kermit.