Image by Tumisu from Pixabay

Parents... one of the first life lessons you should be teaching your children is the art of discretion. Children have loose lips. That's why inappropriate four letter words could come flying out of their mouths at any given moment. Family secrets should be explained as such. I know when I was a kid I was a treasure trove of stories. I knew all about the family and neighborhood news because adults assumed I wasn't listening. The surprise was on them. Especially when all the news is aired to educators.

Redditor u/reasonable_doubt1776 couldn't wait to hear from the educators out there who've discovered some "surprising" facts about their pupils by asking... Teachers of Reddit, what amusing family secrets did you accidentally learn from your overly talkative students?

Children are highly observant. And once they commit to memory something they've seen or heard, all bets are off. I would constantly call out people without knowing. Once, I heard my babysitter tell a friend she hated their other friend because said friend was a skank and she never wanted to see her again. So imagine my surprise a few days later when said friend shows up to hangout. I was confused. So I asked... "Isn't she the skank you never want to see again?" I believe the people sharing on this thread understand the awkwardness of it all.

A shot in the... butt?

Chemistry GIF by memecandy Giphy

I used to do science programming for kids. In the middle of a library summer reading program, I picked a little girl, probably about 4-5 years old, to come up and be my volunteer for a magic trick, which then you explained the science of after it was done. I asked what her name was, she said it into the mic, zero shyness in front of approximately 200 kids and adults. I asked if she had ever heard of the "trick" we were going to do and she said, "Nope!

Grandpa Died

8th grader, excitedly: Mrs. Rosiedokidoki, guess what I found out? My grandpa was a nazi!

Me: do you know what a nazi is?

8th grader: no!!

Me: maybe you should go talk to your mom about that.

She came in the next day and went, "yeah my mom told me I can't tell people about my grandpa anymore."


My favorite dinosaur is a triceratops! And I like your shoes! My dad is back there HI DAD but my mom couldn't come tonight because she got a shot in her butt and can't sit on the hard chairs this place has." Dad (and all the other adults in the audience) were dying.


On the Swings

I had a child once playing on the tire swing. He was a veeeeeeeeerrry serious kid and he looked me dead in the eye and said how much he liked the swing at daycare and how when he grew up he wanted to have a swing just like his mummy and daddy did in their bedroom... Looking his parents in the eye that day telling them he had a good day and keeping silent was difficult.


Teachers hear the craziest things. Someone needs to compile a comedy list of "overhearings" from educators and publish it as a coffee table book. The profits could single handedly fund schools in underprivileged areas for decades. It must make teachers like part of the family, at least for the day.


If someone in your family is pregnant, and you've told your child, I already know.


That's Quite a Tree


Worked at an afterschool program run by the YMCA. Once had a 4th grader explain to me in detail how her sister was also her cousin.

edit: they had the same dad and their moms were sisters, so half siblings through dad and 1st cousins through moms. having a 9 year old run you through that is quite a trip.


Show & Tell

My daughter's kindergarten teacher told me about how one child entertained them at Show and Tell with a complete report on the new alarm system in their house including the code and where the keypad was located behind the curtains!


Save the Water

Kudos going out to all the teachers for glossing over the home stuff they learn!

My sister wrote in her daily journal in grade 1 that our parents had a shower together the night before. Teacher wrote "What a great way to save water!"


I remember when I was about twelve and had just figured out sex on my own, I was at a friend's house and she mentioned offhandedly that her parents bath together. I was like, "that's a thing people do? When their kids are around to know?"

My parents have always been very private, and I thought that was how everyone was.


How many times do you think teachers take and use what they hear? like if it's not a horror story but a funny tagline... you know they use good comedy in real life or the class the following year. They probably owe some royalties for certain witty wisdoms that endeared them to others. The best writers steal, so do teachers. I can feel it.

I'm the DJ

Here's a cute and lighthearted one—I had a girl stay for some help after school one day. At the time I was teaching geometry (10th grade) in a mostly Hispanic school. She told me about growing up in Peru until about the age of 10 or so (I can't remember the exact age she told me). She was telling me that she worked with her uncle sometimes on the weekend. I asked what kind of work—many of our kids worked construction with their families.

"He's a clown... I'm his DJ." That really gave me a smile.


In the Kitchen

We were talking about calling 911, but what a real emergency is. This is tricky with 10 year olds because you want to use real emergency examples but not freak them out. One kid... "so if your mom gives birth in the kitchen, that's an emergency"

Sure enough mom picks him up with his baby brother who was born last week in their kitchen.


Nunna Yo!

None Of Your Business No GIF by Late Night with Seth Meyers Giphy

4th grade. A student on Zoom the other day asked why another student had been gone a few weeks, and we all heard his mom in the back yell, "Boy, that is nunna yo damn business!" before he muted. I almost burst laughing but I held my composure.


Children are always going to surprise you. That is the only fact you can count on when you go into education. I remember several times in school my teachers shushing me when I wasn't appropriate, but with a smirk. I once announced my mother's age to the class and that was when my teacher, Mrs. Klein, informed me that gentlemen never discuss a ladies age. But I know she found it amusing and she used it as wisdom. Good on Mrs. Klein.


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Image by Mandyme27 from Pixabay

It’s weird how much stuff we let slide when we’re kids. Even if you look at the TV shows we watched back then, we had such a high threshold for the bizarre (early 2000’s Nickelodeon, anyone?). So it’s no surprise that some of us straight-up didn’t react when we saw weird crap in person.

Here are a few wild examples of seemingly harmless things we saw as kids that would be horrifying to see now. Brace yourself, this one gets crazy.

Kids and water aren’t a great mix sometimes. It can get real gross, real quick.

Not worth the tranquility.

I've always loved the tranquil feeling of being under water. When I was a kid I would just hold my breath and float around. Sometimes adults would think I was drowning and run up and scoop me out. I don't remember this (it was when I was pretty young) but my parents have told me about it

I used to think it was a funny story... people thinking I was drowning when I was just trying to relax

....until I watched a video explaining child drownings and yeah, the way I acted in water looked exactly like a drowned kid.

I don't think it's funny anymore.



Renee Zellweger Water GIF by Working Title Giphy

Flood water. It was fun and games for the kids, and we even splashed around in it, much to the horror of our parents (who immediately scrubbed us down). We didn't understand then, but now, oh wow...sewer, insects, rats, parasites, etc.


That’s actually hilarious.

My friend and I were walking along the road in about thigh high flood waters. A small boat with two men comes up to us. We were about 9 years old and I think they were National Guard. Anyway, one of the men asks if we remembered exactly where the manholes in the road were. We answered no. He told us that all of the covers had most likely been washed away in the flood but not to worry because it would probably only take them a few days to find our bodies if we were sucked down one of the holes by currents they produced. He spoke in a matter of fact tone and then left.

As an adult, I have zero doubt those two men had a good laugh as they looked back and watched us nope out of that water like two roadrunners in a cartoon.

Edit: It was Fish and Game Wardens. The NG didn't come until later.


Not to mention the crazy injuries that kids somehow are constantly surrounded by.

Had a jogger get hit by a car outside my house once when I was about eight or nine. My nephew came running inside yelling at my parents and my sister to call the ambulance because he was bleeding pretty badly.

I could even see him from our playrooms window and I wondered what he was doing lying on the grass. Turns out he was bleeding out pretty badly, deliriously yelling at my parents when they tried to help.

Eventually, an ambulance came and picked him up, but my parents always told me he made it out okay. The day after, in the spot he was found someone had put a lily in the grass in a vase.

It took me longer than I care to admit to figure out he died from the hit and run.


How sharp were they, though?

A kid f*cking sharpened his fingers with an automatic pencil sharpener at grade 2. Everyone didn't know what was going on until the teacher started freaking out.


I just remembered I tried to stick my finger into electric pencil sharpeners as a kid and disliked how my fingers were too big to fit in it. What the hell was I thinking?


Rock climbing can definitely be dangerous.

scared george costanza GIF by HULU Giphy

We did climbing in PE (sixth to eight grade). Like rock climbing and we had to do our own harness and stuff. PE teacher (supposedly) checked it after we were done to make sure it was done right. One day my neighbor broke an arm and leg because she wasn't properly strapped and fell.

This was at an international American school in Egypt around year 2000, for all those wondering what type of school does rock climbing.


Kids are, in fact, made of elastic.

We used to jump of our roof. First time hurt a little, but after a few times you learnt how to land.

Did it regularly and would try various items as 'parachutes' to see if it slows you down any.

I look at that height now and wonder how the hell we never broke anything - kids bones are more elastic I guess.


​It’s amazing what adults can get away with right under kids’ noses.

A casual hit-and-run.

car japan GIF Giphy

My babysitter was running late to take me to piano lessons and rear ended an old man at a stoplight. She told me that he must not have noticed because he didn't get out of his car. I thought nothing of it, and she drove away and took me to my piano lesson.

I forgot about it, and it didn't click until I remembered the incident years later that I had been unknowingly involved in a hit and run.


Big yikes.

Not so much something I saw - but when I was 5 or 6 I was at a family wedding, and there was this really friendly adult guy (who I didn't know) who told me he was really worried about his nice new car in the parking lot and how he wanted to check on the car but didn't want to leave the wedding.

He asked if I could go check on it and he would pay me $5 just to go see if his car was "okay" being that age $5 was a crazy amount of money so I couldn't believe my luck.

On the way to the parking lot, my mom intercepted me and was absolutely horrified, I remember not understanding why, like trying to tell her no she had it wrong he was nice and paying me! And as an adult now I'm like that's so messed up and I wonder how close a call that could have been.


Go grandma!

Until the age of 12 my grandma had custody of me. I used to sleep with her and she slept with a baseball bat next to her bed. It wasn't until I was much older that I realized she did it dads friends wouldn't be able to do anything to me.

Dad was a drug addict and drunk and when he was out of prison he had all kinds of people in and out of the house. You would never know what would be missing the next day - often my Nintendo :(

She did everything she could to protect me from God knows who/what and I had zero clue!

Edit: Damn this blew up while I was sleeping!! Thank you so much to everyone for the support :)

Im adding extra details to help understand the situation.

My grandmother was born in 1914, had a third grade education and was a housewife her entire life. She was already 71 when I was born! My grandpa died when I was 4 and it was just her and I. We lived in a tiny 2 bedroom house in a terrible neighborhood. It was paid off and that's all she could afford. She lived off of the social security death benefits from my grandpa and food banks. She couldn't just "leave" and go anywhere else.

Also, for those suggesting she should have called the cops - cops don't do anything if you say "I'm scared these guys will do something bad" cops have to wait till something bad happens.

She did her very best and raised my right! Now my father is back in prison (shocker) and is pissed at me for not letting the past be in the past and welcoming him with open arms. Meanwhile I'm a 2x college graduate with a great job, my own house and recently married! She definitely did something right. Unfortunately she died when I was 12. Id give anything to be able to tell her how grateful I am to her for doing everything right.


We see some scary stuff as kids. No wonder most of us are so messed up years later. Often these things don’t even register as something terrible- a lot of times, the things we witnessed were just a part of life.

The best we can do is to take our trauma, and learn from it, so we don’t pass it down to our own children. Because kids don’t deserve it- they deserve to have happy childhoods and not think about the horrors of the world.