I was teaching one of my second grade classes today and a student (Pierre) walked in late. He was angry about something and had a very sour look on his face.
Usually when this happens, I tell the kid that whatever he is mad about happened BEFORE he came to my class, so he can take off that anger like a jacket and leave it outside the classroom and I will remind him pick it back up and put it on when he leaves. Sometimes this works and the kid forget about being mad and I am able to have a productive 45 minutes with him.
In this case, before I could even talk to the kid, one of his classmates shouted out, "Pierre's MAD!" Pierre responded to this by shouting out angrily, "LEAVE ME ALONE!"
Instinctively, I sprang into action. I approached Pierre as if I was frightened of him. "Pierre, oh, no! What's going on? Watch out everyone! Pierre might lose it! I think he is starting to turn into the HULK! (Pierre starts to grin at my antics) Look at his muscles getting bigger! Pierre, CALM DOWN, the girls are getting scarred!" Right on cue, the girls all started huddling together. I go over to him and gently guide him to his seat. "It's OK girls, calm down, I think he has it under control. It's OK everyone He's cool now."
Luckily, Pierre took my joke well. I was able to have a productive 45 minutes after all.