What is Noob Sauce?
Dear Dr. Matt,
Recently my son came home from school quite upset. He said “Mom, guess what my teacher did today?!”
Hearing other stories about this particular teacher, I knew I couldn’t guess and said, “Tell me.”
The story went something like this: “Well, this other kid in my class really likes saying ‘noob sauce,’ and so he was saying ‘noob sauce’ all day and for like the last week. The teacher was mad and told him that he had to stop saying ‘noob sauce’ because it wasn’t a word and it meant nothing. Then, she made him write the word ‘noob sauce’ 1000 times.”
I couldn’t help but laugh at the hypocrisy. I was also feeling how offended my son was by this form of discipline and I really wanted to go to that teacher and explain a little bit of the secret to her. Then I stopped and figured, “Well it wasn’t my son.”
And herein lies my dillema or question: at what point do we or are we as humans meant to stand up and speak truth, defend the meek and claim our power? Is it only when it directly affects us? What I realized is that my son was affected by this just by witnessing it. So how do I gently bring into this teachers awareness the energetic power of her actions?
And if you have ever heard of ‘noob sauce’ a definition would be great!
Noob Saucing Mom
Thanks for your question, NSM!
A friend of mine, who plays World of Warcraft, tells me that “noob” is an abbreviation of the world “newbie.” People who are new to the game (or other similar games) are called “noobs.” (Incidentally, this friend has items he’d like to sell on eBay, if anyone is interested.) Noob sauce? I’ve not heard that term. Likely, the kid in class was fixating on a phrase which WOULDN’T have meaning to a lot of people, if anyone. His point was to antagonize.
I may not give you the answer you want because, you see, both my parents were elementary-school teachers. Imagine trying to maintain order with your children when they are out of control. Now multiply that by 10. Actually, multiply that by 100 as children’s behavior is contagious. A child frequently shouting “noob sauce” is a completely disruptive behavior. If it goes on too long then instead of disciplining one child, you might end up having to try to discipline the whole class (or simply go mad and be committed). Writing the word “noob sauce” is not necessarily injurious, and it is a method that indulges the child’s will to USE the phrase, without the ill effects of affecting the other students.
Having to write a phrase is something we remember because it’s effective, but certainly it’s not the most gentle for that particular student. The most gentle solutions are sometimes simply less practical or more time-consuming, or the teacher is possibly just relying on the methods that work and not concerning themselves with the psychological impact. After all, sometimes the teacher is a noob.
Keep in mind, your responsibility is to your child, and their responsibility is to all the students. Of course your actions would be different. Parents often speak up to teachers and say how they would have done it differently. Sometimes this is very appropriate. Teachers (like most humans) can make some very poor decisions, or say or do something when they are triggered which negatively affects their students, and it’s an amazing feat every moment where they do not allow this to happen. When a kid is running around yelling, “noob sauce,” he is trying to get a negative reaction. A teacher who doesn’t immediately turn green and yell back, “HULK SMASH!” is to be applauded.
If your child’s teacher is consistently acting inappropriately, definitely say something. If, however, you are motivated to say something because of how your child was affected, your attention may be misplaced. Your responsibility is to your son, and how he was affected is something unique to him. Also, NSM, if you are ready to stand up and charge when something like this happens, then likely there’s a deep wound from when you felt disrespected as a child, or witnessed someone else who was downtrodden by authority. Be careful you’re not trying to save the world through your son. (Unless he’s Jesus.)
If you really want to make a difference in your child’s classroom, then go to his teacher and say, “These are the days I have available every month in which I can volunteer in your classroom and give you any assistance you need.” Perhaps you do this already. After all, if you would like to raise the teacher’s energetic awareness, what better way than by example?
I would wager that if you were to consistently be in that classroom, you might find yourself to be a bit of a noob when it comes to dealing with those children, and you might have to rely on a bit of the ol’ noob sauce.
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*Dr. Matt is not a real doctor.