It was an average Thursday in Tulsa, Oklahoma. The sun was glistening and it was a perfect day for teaching. As I was writing the lesson rules on the chalkboard I heard a rather large slam emanating from the classroom entrance. As I turned around I was not very surprised to see that it was one of my top students arriving late yet again for my period 5 English class. Ponyboy Curtis was his name, youngest of three brothers he told me once. He always seats himself in the front row usually at the left side of the end table.
He is an excessive introvert and prefers much more to read quietly to himself then go outside and socialize with other people. As he treads to his self-appointed seat, he passes me and I greet him with a warm welcome. “Good afternoon Ponyboy, what circumstances have affected you to arrive tardy to my English class?” I said, very concerned for the recently frequent pattern of belatedness. He gently and quietly replied just so that I could hear. “I had an encounter with someone and we had to sort it out.” His legs quivered as he whispered me that. He gave me a kind stare trying to communicate to me silently that he was alright.
He continued his short journey to his seat, the lethargy of his body showing in his heavy, sluggish steps. I return to writing the lesson rules. When I turned around I thought that I should make Ponyboy more comfortable by letting him read the first paragraph of the new book we were going to study in class.