Scene: Teacher trying to get the year 7s working silently on an assessment straight after lunch on a Friday afternoon. Room full of tiny humanoids wriggling and bouncing around, ties around their necks and sleeves rolled up to their elbows. After a lunchtime spent eating sugary treats from the canteen, they’re in orbit. After about 10 minutes of hubbub the room falls silent and the teacher breathes a sigh of relief. The silence is sweet.
Roman (speaks loudly and proudly): Look Miss! I can move my eybrows in different directions to each other.
(He does so. The class laughs.)
Will (a tiny twig of a boy with slightly sticky-out ears) calls excitedly: Look Miss! I can wiggle my ears!
(He does so. The teacher can’t help herself and starts laughing. This sets the class off again.)
Will (encouraged) : Look Miss! I can move one ear at a time!!!
(He can. The class laugh heartily. The teacher turns away and faces the whiteboard. Her shoulders are shaking. After she gets her face back under control she turns back to face the class.)
Teacher (using her stern I’m-not-mucking-around-now voice): Okay year 7! Time to settle down and get to work! You’ve wasted 15 minutes so far and ….
(She sees Roman. He’s sitting there with his tongue sticking out, curled, waiting for her to notice. He’s grinning. )
Teacher (sticks out her tongue, curls it and winks at Roman): …. you’re NOT going to get any more time! Now get on with it!!!!