Kids Say The Darnedest Things

My siblings and I were raised on adages.  Often complaining on our part led to an obscure retort from my parents.  Saying things like, “I want this,” was meet with, “If wishes were horses then beggars would ride,” or “Well, people in hell want ice water.”  Trying to use the excuse, “Well, he did it first,” led to the response, “Well, if he jumped off a bridge, would you?”  When looking for a small chance that something we wanted to happen would happen, we were told, “The chances are between slim and none and it looks like slim just left town.”  Needless to say, I have a wide repertoire of these sayings.

When I started working with kids, often I would use methods that  I remembered my parents using, including these adages.  When I had kids interject into a conversation that was really none of their business (often when another child was in trouble), I would look at them and say, “I don’t need help from the peanut gallery.”  When kids decided to boss their classmates, often telling them not to do something that they had done only a half hour earlier, I would state, “You’re the pot calling the kettle black.”  After nine months of working with the same set of children, they heard these sayings often.  
A couple of weeks ago, I was training a new teacher.  While we were eating lunch with the kids, one of the children interjected into a conversation.  I gave him a look and he said, “I know, I know, I’m the peanut gallery.”  The new teacher started to laugh.  Another boy, not to be outdone by his classmate in making an adult laugh, shouted, “Oh yeah?  I’m the pot calling the kettle black!”
Well, at least I made some sort of impression on the kids. . .   

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