I am taking 3 classes this semester at Caldwell, I also teach Kindergarten (general ed.). I was very upset in a class this week when another Caldwell student kept referring to his high school class of students as zombies, because they were not motivated to learn. Perhaps I thought, because I am a parent of a 10 year old autistic son (who goes to a school out of district) I am a little too sensitive to people calling children with special needs names. But the more I thought about it the more I realized that this bothered me so much because I am a teacher! How dare a teacher of a special needs class (or any class) refer to their students by a cruel name. I tried to play devil's advocate and think that maybe college class is the place to let off steam and know "I didn't really mean it". This reminds me why I stay out of the teacher's room at lunch time, negative and gossipy remarks about students are wrong. The person in my class said it 4 times!! I can't help but think this must reflect in his communication and teaching with his students.
I am sure my son was well talked about and maybe even called a few "pet" names when he attended general ed. classes-he was a handful I know. As educators I believe that we should never degrade our students, even if they "can't hear me".