Friday, September 22, 2006

The teacher of pythagoras
By Kirsten Nour Namskau

I think the experience of being a teacher is the same all over the world.
The children behave approximately in the same way. An average day in grade 8 is as follows:
The bell rang and the children came tumbling into the class-room and bumped down at their seats . . . An incredible noise of shouting, flirting, scratching with the chairs, paper-balls and rubber-pieces goes through the air, for the first 5 minutes.
I stand at the board, waiting for the class to calm down, while I write on the board the date, the name of the weekday and the subject of the lesson (History). . . . When I can “hear my own thoughts” I call out to the class: “So . . . are we ready to start the lesson? Waleed, what subject do we have in this lesson?”
Waleed: “Sex. . . . Ohh, sorry . . . biology.”
Me: “No Waleed. We have History.”
I continue: “Can you open your book at page 58 guys. We have come to page 58 . . . 58 . . . page 58. Did you get that Ronny? . . . Page 58.”
I wait for 2 minutes to let the students come to the page.
“Rana” I says “Can you start to read, please.”
Rana stoops into her bag to get the book . . . after what felt like “forever” she comes up again: “Teacher, I think I have forgotten the book at home. I’m sorry, teacher . . . I really am.”
Me: “So, go and sit with Berta.”
Huge mess and noise as she draws her chair to Berta’s desk.
Rana: “What page?”
Oliver: “Dude ! “
Rana: “Yeah, I only asked, what page?”
Me: “ Christian, can you tell Rana what page we are on.”
Chistian: “ 50 . . . .no, just a minute. “ he’s bladdering in his book to find the page, then says: “No, not 50 . . . 53 . . . I think . . . just a minute.” Bladdering again: “No, 56 maybe . . . “
The class is laughing.
Christian: “Don’t laugh. I know I’m close . . .right teacher???”
Rana is rolling her eyes.
Me: “ Page 58. “ (I’m writing the page-number on the board.)
Waiting for Rana and Berta to open the book at the correct page, not agreeing in what page.
Rana: “What page did you say? “
I’m pointing at the board.
Rana: “Teacher are you angry at me?”
Me: “No Rana, but can we start now? “
Discovering Gert chewing on a gum, I turn to him: “ Gert, can you take out that gum please.”
Gert: “No prob.”
He takes the gum out . . . roll it between two fingers to a small ball and fasten it behind his ear. He looks at me with an innocent glance.
I turn to Rana . . . . waiting for her to start.
Rana: “Teacher, I’m sorry I had forgotten my book. It’s only one thing in the world that I want . . . and that is to make my teacher happy. To remember all my books, do the homework and class-work and make the most out of the lesson . . . . But just today . . . just today, I forgot my book.”
Me thinking:” yeah right. You forget all of it every day.”
Me saying loud: “OK Rana, that’s good . . . can we start now? Start to read from page 58 please.”
Finally . . . the last 35 minutes of the lesson appear as a lesson should be. . . .


Anonymous said...

When I think back to what a little horror I was at school, I thank my lucky stars that I never became a teacher myself.

dragonlady474 said...

If I was a teacher they'd eventually have to put me in an insane asylum for losing my mind or in prison for murder. lol

Anonymous said...

Wow! Your post took me back in time 25 years.

Now that I know more about attention deficit, puberty and adolescence, these types of behavior are understandable although no less annoying.

MrsJoseGoldbloom said...

The way I behaved as a kid is the very reason I wouldn't even consider teaching. Oh and also the way Dragonlady was...she was a brat! :)

Freddie said...

Yep. That's about how I remember 8th grade. The good ol' days.

QofD said...

Oh my... this made me laugh so hard. Yes, I think being a teacher must be a similar experience no matter where you are. I imagine that kids are pretty much the same throughout the world.