Of course we tell the truth 99% of the time. That’s the behavior we want to model for our students, after all. But sometimes, the situation calls for a little white lie (or a big whopper). Presenting … the lies teachers tell their students.
1. “Why yes, I do have eyes in the back of my head.”
We don’t care if you’ve taken AP Biology; we’re still going to try to sell you on this one.
2. “Oh, that thing on the ceiling? It’s a camera, and the principal is watching the footage right now.”
Wi-Fi boxes, sprinklers—we’ve lost count of the things we’ve claimed are secretly cameras.
3. “All the teachers are saying you’re the BEST behaved class in the school. The principal’s coming to check it out for herself.”
We learned this little trick from TikTok, and it’s a great one for observations. If you say it, they’ll act the part.
4. “This bubble gum will make you SUPER smart for your test.”
What can we say? We love an inexpensive incentive and the power of positive thinking.
5. “A Band-Aid will make it better.”
For reasons we can’t explain, this one is usually true.
6. “Oh, this weekend? I’ll be reading classic novels and getting in a few hours of cardio.”
So what if the reality is we won’t be leaving our couch for 48 hours?
7. “I’m allergic to Pop-its.”
I don’t know; I think it’s something in the plastic they use? So mysterious. Either way, better put it back in your bag.
8. “Yes, it’s for a grade.”
I mean, it’s all for a grade, in the big picture. Whether I’m going to sort through these 250 exit tickets is a different story.
9. “Of course that’s Bubbles the goldfish.”
Classroom pets offer lots of learning opportunities—yes, even about death. But if you aren’t up for successive goldfish funerals, we don’t blame you for not mentioning it’s Bubbles the 17th.
10. “Of course I know what you just said. I hear everything.”
Lucky teachers, blessed with super vision and super hearing.
11. “I don’t have any favorite students.”
We all have favorites; we just don’t talk about them publicly.
12. “I’ll have the tests graded by tomorrow.”
We try to tell the truth on this one, we really do, but it doesn’t always work out that way.
13. “Oh thanks, I needed a new mug.”
Never mind that I have 3,017 of them at home. It’s the thought that counts, right?