SOLSC 25/31 2012 Classroom Culture?

I have some special kiddos in my class this year. They are lively and fun, and always keep me on my toes. There are a few who crack me up on a daily basis, and let me know that we do indeed live in a small community and a rural district.
One such little guy came in the other day and was so excited. “Mrs. Klinger did you see that episode of Mud Cats last night?” 
I am grinning as he jubilantly goes on.
“Nick’s cousin was in it, did you see him and that big ol cat he got.”
I begin to smile even more and nod my head as I think to myself-
I am probably the only teacher in this school (any school) that knows what this kid is talking about.
 Last year he had to “enlighten” the kindergarten teacher on the life of “Swamp people.” Thankfully I already know about this show as well.  
“Mud Cats” is a program filmed here in Oklahoma about men (2-4 in a team) and “noodle” LARGE catfish.
By “noodle” I mean swim in lakes and rivers and then stick their hands and arms under submerged rocks or logs until they feel a LARGE catfish and then put their hands in the mouths of these fish and bring them (hopefully) to the surface.
And by LARGE I mean anywhere from 40 to 70+ pounds.
They then race to weigh them and the team with the biggest fish- wins.
The finale is filmed in a small town just east of here and the lakes and rivers around our area or some of the most widely used for this sport.
I of course know about all this and the show because of my kids and hubby and their love of fishing. Reality TV at its finest here at our house.
 Thankfully they are SMART enough not to stick their hands in a LARGE fish’s mouth. But that doesn’t keep them from watching others do it. Hence my Mud Cat knowledge.
So the day Carson was so excited about the episode the night before I had indeed seen it. But I did not know Nick’s cousin had been there “IN REAL LIFE!” I listened as he and Nick went on about their real life knowledge and the connection they had to a SUPERSTAR!
I laughed again this week when I got this message from Carson’s on facebook.
“So Carson convinces his GM to buy him some camo yarn today. Guess what we are all doing now? Yep, finger knitting and watching Swamp is good!”
       The “camo yarn” and finger knitting comes from reading the book Extra Yarn by Mac Burnett and teaching my kids how finger crochet with yarn (read about it here). The boys were so excited when I brought in camo colored for them to practice with.
I am glad to know I have brought a tiny bit of culture into the lives of my kiddos and their families



  1. Too sweet! I am from a very small town in ND, and my family still lives there. My sister-in-law teaches first grade there. Her stories sound much like yours, and every time, they make me laugh! :)

  2. This is great! Love the glimpse into your small town's culture! I feel the excitement about Mud Cats!

  3. I love that there is a distinct culture in your area that you can talk with your students about and feel their enthusiasm and pride. This made me grin :)

  4. I love EXTRA YARN! What a fun mix of cultures! I too know about that sort of fishing show (I am not sure if it is the same one, but the men in my life are fascinated by it).

  5. Like Christy, I loved Extra Yarn, & I remember your talk about it & the finger weaving. I bought the book for school & shared your idea, too, Tammy. I'm glad you knew about the show. Wonder if they get hurt by the catfish.