Getting Schooled: Greater Tampa Bay's Teachers Share Their Funniest Classroom Moments - Guide to Greater Tampa Bay
Now Reading
Getting Schooled: Greater Tampa Bay’s Teachers Share Their Funniest Classroom Moments

Getting Schooled: Greater Tampa Bay’s Teachers Share Their Funniest Classroom Moments

by Ryan Walsh

Sorry Alice Cooper, the season of syllabi and back to school circulars is here.

Greater Tampa Bay’s hardworking educators love what they do. Years of schooling, decades of experience and countless hours of overtime work have all been spent inspiring the minds of the thousands of children they see each year. It is not all fun and games… except sometimes when it is.

Kids are funny. A classroom full of them can be unpredictable. These teachers on the frontlines prepare for battle each day, unsure of what silliness or misadventures they may encounter at any moment. Presented below are the true accounts of several area educators highlighting some of the zaniest, silliest, most embarrassing moments of their tenured careers.


One anonymous third grade teacher from Tampa remembers a special present she received from a student. No, not a shiny apple fit for a teacher –– it was the gift of a confusing comedic offering that would stand the test of time.

“I’m always so appreciative when students bring gifts on the first and last day of school and at the holidays. Most of the time it’s a gift card, a candle or a little Bath & Body Works set. One Christmas, I had a student give me quite the interesting gift –– a large pair of false eyelashes. I, of course, just said ‘Thank you,’ and gave the student a hug. Later, I shared my confusion and some laughs with my friends in the teachers’ lounge. They all joked how I was going to struggle with the thank you card. And that I would look very glamourous at the Holiday luncheon.

The best part was a few years later, when I had a friend’s child in my class, she had her daughter give me a fresh pair of fake lashes as a gag gift for Christmas. I had forgotten all about it but when I opened that package, I think I laughed so hard the whole school heard me.”


Viveca Elsy teaches anatomy and biology at Countryside High School in Pinellas County. A second-year instructor, Elsy has amassed quite a few awkward encounters. Here she recounts an experience ripped straight from a Van Halen song.

One time, last year, a student looked at me and said, ‘Oh my gosh, you’re so pretty.’ The student didn’t realize I was the teacher until later when they saw me walk out of the teacher’s lounge. Then I heard her shout loudly, ‘Holy [#@*%]! She’s a teacher!’ She ended up being my student this past year.”

See Also


Catherine Perkinson is a colleague of Elsy’s at Countryside. As she warms up for her sophomore year (as a teacher), she left with no shortage of her own stories.

She started the year off strong with an embarrassing incident on her first day.

“I was still trying to figure out how to best set up my desk, and I had my laptop plugged in so that the wire hung across the floor. The first few periods I was conscious about stepping over it, but by lunchtime, I completely forgot. I started teaching my fourth period, and stumbled over the wire, launching my laptop across the desk into the wall and nearly sending me to the floor. Thankfully I was able to stay upright. I looked up at the kids and none of them were laughing, thankfully. I think they just felt bad for me since it was my first day. They were all freshmen, so it was their first day of high school, too. I think they were just glad it didn’t happen to one of them.” For these teachers, and the many others with thousands of similar stories, summer break may not have been long enough.

Copyright © 2020 by Guide to Greater Tampabay | Powered by TheRipal

Scroll To Top