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Brandon returns in plastic

One of the prizes that I gave to my students last week was a small, plastic boy with red hair. Long ago, my children played with this boy, but being in middle school now, these toys have become meaningless to my kids.]

Truthfully, they would be meaningless to my students, too, if not turned into a prize.

Context is everything.

“This red-headed boy looks like little Brandon Dorfman,” I told my students. “My very first difficult student from my very first year of teaching.”

Then I told them a story about Brandon and some raisins. An amusing story about how a class of students – led by Brandon – turned against me when I tried to switch Junior Mints for raisins one day.

An hour later, I found “Brandon” on my keyboard.

An hour after that, he was sitting at my desk.

Yesterday I found him on my stool.

Ever since one of my students won the Brandon toy, it’s been popping up everywhere, making me crazy but also blessedly reminding me of a little boy who unintentionally taught me so much so long ago.

I’ve trained my students well.

Too well.