Schools Grapple With The Puzzling Trend of ‘Coin Boys’

In a viral post titled “Every year these kids come back with a new annoying quirk… ‘coin boys’ are apparently the new thing,” an anonymous Redditor using the group account u/LuciusDickusMaximus explained a fad among their high school freshman students. 

The Coin Boys

“The newest thing here is a flock of self-proclaimed ‘coin boys’ who carry a quarter on hand at all times and constantly flip it.

They have their entire personality revolve around coins, coin flips, and chance. When we went around doing an ice breaker, 4 or 5 of the kids said some variation of “I live by the coin and die by the coin” as their fact,” the Redditor said. 

They also claimed that two coin boys chose to flip their coins to determine whether they would do the first assignment of the year. The Redditor said they warned the boys deciding whether they would do their schoolwork using a coin flip would result in calls to their parents, but both boys flipped anyway. 

The first boy’s coin “came up heads (thank god for that, at least),” the Redditor said. “But then the other coin boy in that class flipped his coin, and it came up tails.

He said the coin has spoken, and he’s not doing it. I say very well, enjoy your 0 and your call home— what a great way to start off the school year and your high school career.”

Other Teachers Told Their Stories

In the top comment, with over 7,000 upvotes, u/philosophyofblonde said that if they were dealing with coin boys, they’d “play along.”

“Heads, everyone gets a pop quiz. Tails you get an essay. Heads, I email your mom, tails I call your dad,” u/philosophyofblonde said. “Walk down the hallways smirking and flipping a coin yourself. Keep it going for the rest of the year. Either you’ll be cool, or they’ll lose interest and stop. It’s a win-win.”

How To Ruin Their Little Game

Other Redditors agreed that the best way to defuse an annoying fad among teens is to lean into it. u/Kaiisim said, “Honestly, engage in any meme, and you will ruin it for them, lmao.”

A Redditor who goes by u/littleb3anpole said they used the tactic with the viral “Emotional Damage” meme created by TikTok and YouTube comedian Steven He.

“Emotional Damage” has become “a prevalent reaction to clips showing someone getting owned or being emotionally damaged, both ironically and unironically,” according to KnowYourMeme. 

Littleb3anpole said that her class used the meme constantly and that it, “Drove me insane.”

“The main kid doing it was looking over his maths test at one point and realized he made a small error which stuffed up his whole answer,” Littleb3anpole said. “He was like, ‘Oh damn, I can’t believe I missed that, and I went ‘MATHEMATICAL DAMAGE!’” 

The class burst out laughing, the Redditor said, and after seeing a teacher use the meme, it died out over the next few weeks. 

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Troll or Be Trolled?

In a later post, philosophyofblonde joked that “Troll or be Trolled” should be offered as a professional development course (PD) for teachers, a suggestion that several Redditors agreed with.

“I’ve often thought basic improv ‘yes and’ training should be part of teacher training,” said u/SadAd435. 

u/Senior_Ad_7640 said, “Seriously. Probably the most useful skill in crisis management is the ability to just be more ridiculous than the other person.”

u/married_to_a_reddito agreed with Senior_Ad_7640, and shared a story of when her comedic de-escalation skills protected her students. 

“I had a 13-year-old girl threaten to stab another girl,” married_to_a_reddito said. “I didn’t know what to do, so I put up my fists, hopped all around, and said, ‘Let’s go, tiger, just you and me!’

For context, I’m a 270-pound, 40-year-old Mrs. Frizzle wannabe. She started laughing, I started laughing, the class busted up, and then she and I stepped into the hall, and I gave her a big hug.”

This article was produced by TPR Teaching. Source.


Caitriona Maria is an education writer and founder of TPR Teaching, crafting inspiring pieces that promote the importance of developing new skills. For 7 years, she has been committed to providing students with the best learning opportunities possible, both domestically and abroad. Dedicated to unlocking students' potential, Caitriona has taught English in several countries and continues to explore new cultures through her travels.

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