A few bad things that I find upsetting:
1. Lying – Always tell me the truth, even if it’s bad. I will handle the truth much better than a lie. I forgive the lie, but it’s hard to build up that bridge of trust again since you have burned it up with those hot words of fire!
2. Sneaky behavior – Being slick will only carry you so far, and then you get busted. I’ve told a couple of students that I may not catch them today, tomorrow, or next year, but someone else much worse can and will. They will have some ‘splain’ to do at that point.
3. Cheating – If you didn’t study for the test/quiz, then don’t use your notes or your friend’s paper to try to get by. Learn the material for yourself out a sense of pride and accomplishment. I had a student put the answers in her lap; I caught her looking down at her lap. She received a “0” on her test. I don’t play around or offer retakes for such a choice. I tell the kids to “maintain their integrity” by keeping their eyes on their own paper. I monitor them to show I mean business.
4. Mean behavior/cruelty – Acting like a turkey to someone else who may not be as popular, intellectually-gifted, etc. than you doesn’t elevate you in my sight. It makes me see you as being lower than a snake’s belly. I have a tendency to rush in and defend the one being picked on even if the picked on one started it. After I separate the combatants, I will then let the “victim” know that one day they may upset the wrong person, and I may not be able to help them out.
5. Profanity/cursing/potty mouth – I find profanity offensive, and I don’t like to hear it spoken around me or my students. Yes, I can put together a mean blue streak like a lot of folks, but I exercise restraint to be an example to my kids. I think profanity demonstrates a lack of vocabulary savvy because you are limiting yourself on the language you choose.