Flounder and the time I broke the rules, Day 9

First off, some people may know I teach young children, if you didn’t, now you do. Secondly, I teach 4th grade which is a big year for writing and hence forth the introduction my friends…

Every year I am faced with teaching the same modes of writing: narrative, expository, opinion…etc… I sprinkle in poetry, creative writing, and NANOWRIMO. I’m such a rebel, I know, hold the gasps for later, you have no idea how I roll…:)

It should come as no surprise that when teaching narrative writing, I use my own personal experiences to share stories and model with my students. For the last five years I have shared this particular story with many, many children. So today, I share it with you. Now, please remember this is told with a specific emphasis on introducing students to utilizing elements of writing such as onomatopoeia, and other elements of figurative language. It is told in simple language with clear details that support the topic. Do enjoy…


“The Time I Broke The Rules”

     “Creeeeeeeeeeak!” Aw man, I stepped on the creaky floor board again. “Rachel what are you doing up there?” I froze in my tracks. I didn’t move and I quickly responded with a shrill, “NOTHING MOOOOOOM!” Ever so slowly I slid my socked feet across the carpeted hallway towards her door. I grasped the door handle in my hand and slowly opened it without a sound.  Next thing I knew, I was in her room. The blue walls bearing down on me. I could hear the burbling of the fish tank in the immaculate shelving unit. This is it, I thought to myself.

I tip toed over to the shelf and snatched the green fish net. I slid open the black fish tank roof as Debbie had showed me when she cleaned out the water a while back. “Hmmmmmmmmm,” I murmured to myself. What should I fish out? I saw the poor fish swimming around frantically. The beautiful dark blue fish glided right by the net. I went for it, slowly it swam in, I dunked in the large plastic cup filling it with water and carefully sliding the net into the cup. “Voila!” Fish in cup. Success.

Now what? I wasn’t even really sure what my purpose was. Perhaps it was the fact that being in her room, touching what I wasn’t supposed to and being rebellious felt really good. (Even to my four or five-year old self.) Poor fish, it was swimming around, and around in circles. “Uh oh….” what do I do? I dumped the cup back into the fish tank, the beautiful fish began to swim again. “Phew!” Everything must be ok. I went in for the grayish guppy with the blue line on it’s body. But what I didn’t realize was, I forgot to refill the water cup. Before I knew it, the fish was jumping around, I lost my grip, water droplets were all over the carpet, the fish went floundering all over, on my arm, onto my hand, then onto her desk. Oh good grief! I’ll spare you the gory details. I was felt like a terrible child at that moment. I finally got a good grip on that poor defenseless fish. I dumped it in the water, slammed the lid shut, shoved the net onto the side of the tank, ran out and closed the door. I stumbled down the stairs and headed for the kitchen table.

Later that day, after my sister had returned from school she headed up to her room. I sat at the kitchen table coloring inconspicuously. However, it wasn’t more than a few moments later when I heard her shriek and come running down the stairs. “MOOOOOOOOOOOM, Rachel killed my fish!” I sunk back into the chair with an impending doom setting in. No getting out of this one. So you see dear reader, next time you feel like breaking the rules, think twice before making that choice!


And that folks is the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth. In all actuality, I feel incredibly horrible about that guppy fish. Years later, many, many years later I experienced the grief of fish loss once again. Andy and I bought a fish tank. Well it started out rather simply at first. I wanted a gold-fish in a bowl, much like the one in Amelie, the movie. Only, Andy suggested, “Why not get a fish tank and more fish?” It sounded delightful to me. Little did I know it would be a pain in my tush and I’d end up dealing with dead fish, on my own. We adopted 2 guppy’s and I named them Hermie and Kermie. Karma is a b*&^%. They both died. I adopted a red fish and named it Ernie. He attacked poor little Hermie. Then Kermie soon followed later. I was traumatized.

I’m sorry I killed your fish Debbie. I’ll buy you a new one when you come home. 🙂

I love you! Have a sparkly day, and watch out for the fish….they are tempting, but they jump. xoxo.


2 thoughts on “Flounder and the time I broke the rules, Day 9

  1. Rachel,Very good story and as Old Paul Harvey would say “And now for the rest of the story”.  What you didn’t know is that ole dad went in the den to clean the fish tank and left the poor little guppy out too longand it died.  From the evidence I knew you had beentampering with the tank, so… I just put the guppy backin the tank and said nothing to teach you a lesson andfeel the guilt of your wrongful act. So I guess it is abouttime I apologized because I feel guilty also. “I’m sorry Rachel”.  I Love You, Dad P.S. I just made that whole thing up, cause it reminded meof the writer who wrote the dialogue for the episodes on”Two and One Half Men”. I Do Love You,Dad  

    Liked by 1 person

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