Few could argue that stress is an ever-present part of life. Part of becoming a healthy adult is learning how to deal with stress in a way that does not harm yourself or others. Some adults choose to take baths, light candles, meditate, or go for walks. Unfortunately not everyone is able to use calming strategies to combat this problem. Young people often have an especially difficult time learning to cope. In middle school we often see tears and stomach aces, and sometimes we even get shouting, stomping, and penises. "Penises?!" you are probably asking. "Why penises?!"
Fortunately I am not talking about actual penises (if I never see one of those at school I'll be a happy woman) just pencil drawings of them. One of my students was very upset a few weeks ago over an essay we were working on in class. He very much wanted to avoid finishing the essay, and he was very unhappy when my aide and I would not let him off the hook. His solution to this problem was to draw several pictures of well-endowed aliens and cavemen all over his essay packet. He was shocked and very annoyed when we simply brought him a new packet and made him START OVER ENTIRELY!!! It seems that Mrs. H and I are not so easily rattled as all that. Perhaps he can take up yoga in the future.