At my company, part of our job is to engage kids with fun games so that it doesn’t feel like what we’re doing (remediating their reading) is stressful work. We partly achieve this through involving them in a spy/agent theme. Agent T is one of my kids. He’s pretty sassy, though sometimes it’s hard to tell through the atrocious spelling in the messages he sends to me. “Hoy Sarah, I have 1 nueing brother and a nose brother. Ta, Agent T” Ideas, anyone? Also, how great is “hoy” as a greeting?!
He recently decided to put me to the test, sending me a message that said, “Slime is bad, always avoid it. Thanks for all your help, Agent T”
That may seem a bit random to the uninitiated, but in fact, the slime phrase a little codeword sentence we tell them to say to identify the other “agents” in their schools using our program.
In my rush to get through the day’s work, I sent him a cursory reply to… keep up the great work!
Easy. Job done.
But he pulled a fast one on me. In a subsequent message, he informed me that he knew I must not be a real agent because, as we had taught him ourselves, the proper response codeword phrase “Not unless it tastes good”. I believe he ended his message with a triumphant “HA!”
Now I was in trouble. Foiled by a 9 year old.
I think I managed to save face a bit by writing to Agent T that, he was in fact correct. I used to be an agent, but while on mission in the field I was betrayed and escaped with injuries. I had been sitting behind a desk as a controller (right word? I hope he doesn’t know either) training up young and promising agents like himself ever since. And he certainly was showing great signs of promise.
Now we just have to hope I never meet the kid. Otherwise I’ll have to remember to limp, or wear an eye-patch, or something worthy of a veteran spy!