Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Mommy’s Piggy Tales – 4th Grade

I’m participating in a project called Mommy’s Piggy Tales where I’ll be writing stories about my childhood once a week for 15 weeks, starting with birth and ending with graduation in the hopes that my children, and possibly my children’s children, will one day appreciate it.


My fourth grade teacher was Mr. Lamp.  He was my first (and only) male teacher in elementary school and I thought he was awesome!  He was very interested in science and physical fitness, so I remember doing several science experiments and a lot of running.  In fact, I believe that was the first year that I ran Bloomsday (a 12K run through the streets of my hometown).

At one point, Mr. Lamp had us all building our own Rube Goldberg-ian mouse traps out of paper and office supplies.  I remember spending a long time on that thing trying to get it to work just perfectly.

My favorite assignment from Mr. Lamp (or at least the one I remember the best) was to write precise directions on how to make a Peanut Butter and Jelly sandwich.  The goal was to make the instructions as exact as we could because the next day, Mr. Lamp would read our instructions to each of us and we were to follow in making our own sandwich.

I worked so hard to make sure I wrote each step in perfect detail.  I remember feeling so proud of myself as I followed my instructions and built my sandwich.  I also remember the twinkle in Mr. Lamp’s eye and the smirk on his face when he read my last instructions: “put the two pieces of bread together” (to paraphrase).

As I started to push the two pieces together, jelly to peanut butter, Mr. Lamp stopped me and pointed out that I had not specified how to put them together and that, perhaps, I should put them together gooey-sides-out. 

I gave him his smirk right back and slammed my two pieces together as fast as I could and took a bite out for good measure.  I may have been less than precise, but I’m no dummy!


  1. How fun!!!! Sounds like an awesome teacher...wish there were more man teachers...I remember enjoying the male teachers I had in high school. He also had a sense of humor.

  2. Mr. Lamp sounds great! What a meaningful way to teach!

  3. LOL! That sounds like a really fun project.

  4. I had a male teacher in 6th grade. I thought it was cool too.

    This man sounds great! I had the PB and J assignment too but we didn't get to make one.

    12k in 4th grade? That's fantastic! Kids are totally capable we just don't always give them the opportunity.

  5. I LOVE having good teacher memories! Your "brillance" made me grin!

  6. I have done this very writing project with kids I taught - I used how to make chocolate milk. It is always fun to see how things turn out. A 12K sounds challenging in 4th grade! Not sure I could have done that! Great post!


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