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Uncategorized   |   Oct 13, 2009

Call me Judge Judy Jr.

By Angela Watson

Founder and Writer

Call me Judge Judy Jr.

By Angela Watson

Please? ‘Cuz I really am obsessed with her show. My husband and I watch it faithfully (4 pm in both New York and Fort Lauderdale!), and we’re convinced she is the solution to all the world’s problems related to personal responsibility and integrity.

The show is of particular interest to me because being a judge is one of the many unofficial roles that teachers must play, especially when navigating the choppy waters of kids’ interpersonal conflicts. Next time your students do some truth-twisting or rely on the tired “I ain’t DO nothin!” as their standard line of defense, try out one of these Judge Judy-isms:

See? She even knows how to give ‘the teacher look’!
See? She even knows how to give ‘the teacher look’!

“If you’re telling the truth, you don’t have to look over there while you think up what to say next. Look at ME when you’re talking.”

“Now you’re making things up as you go along. Don’t make it up as we go.”

“That story doesn’t make sense. And if it doesn’t make sense, it’s not true.”

“So if I call ____ and ask whether s/he gave you permission to do that, s/he’s going to agree with your story?” [Makes the call immediately.]

“Someone’s not telling the truth here. It’s either him or you. Which one of you is lying?”

“I am a human lie detector. I don’t need a machine.”

“You know how I can tell if a young person is lying? If her lips are moving.”

Obviously, I’m being a bit tongue-in-cheek here. However, there are at LEAST four incidents every single day in which I have to determine which kid is being honest and who needs the Judge Judy truth-telling smackdown. I’ve actually used each of these lines with considerable success (except the last one, which I’ve never uttered in the interest of professionalism, and also because the kids wouldn’t get it). Now imagine my success rate if I sat on an elevated platform and invested in a black robe and gavel…hmmm….

Angela Watson

Founder and Writer

Angela created the first version of this site in 2003, when she was a classroom teacher herself. With 11 years of teaching experience and more than a decade of experience as an instructional coach, Angela oversees and contributes regularly to...
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  1. HI Angela,
    I just wanted to say thanks for your encouragement about mean co-workers. Your comments prompted a chain reaction of advice. I talked to a sibling who advised me to talk to my pastor, who advised me to talk to my principal. A new class opened up unexpectedly and I got it! I'm still tired, but happy. Without you, I would still be trying survive the old scenario.
    Exhibit A

  2. @Anon: Hah, that's funny. You said it, not me. 🙂

    @Exhibit A: I'm so glad to hear that your situation is improved! Thanks so much for taking the time to comment and let me know how I helped. So you're with a new team now? Hallelujah!

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