Every year I offer a reading about a suggestion box and then open one for my students. Answers are anonymous. This year I made a mistake--in trying to simplify it, I asked my morning class what they liked and did not like, and what they would change. This resulted in answers like, "I like coconuts. I don't like fish." I will spare you most of those answers. In my afternoon class I asked, "What do you like about the class?" This worked out a little better. Though I've cleaned up grammar and usage a little, I've changed nothing else. Here's what my kids had to say:
I like it when we can study a lot, and be with our classmates. I don't like when the teacher gives us "zero." (To be clear, I may write a zero on a piece of paper and hand it to a student. It doesn't actually mean anything.)
The class is nice and the teacher is the best.
I like to talk about stories. I don't like to do classwork. I would change myself and speak more in class.
I like that we can make jokes with the teacher. I don't like when we do classwork only in a book. It's boring. We can do something different in class. And I hope the teacher can cut all his hair. I think that is better.
I like English class, because in this class we have a lot of good students and teachers. I never saw another teacher better than Mr. Goldstein. He's an interesting and funny guy. I don't like when somebody sleeps in class. It's terrible. I like everything.
I like everything about this class. I think everything is good and this class too.
I like chocolate and taking a break. I don't like noise. I want to change nothing.
In this class I like the teacher because he's funny and active. I don't like when the teacher screams at me and that's why I went to the doctor for my ears. I would like to change the seats and only have one period of English.
I like this schools because it's very big and I think that it's the best school in Queens. I don't like the food because it's bad and I would change only the food. Sometimes the teachers are nice and other teachers are bad. I like it here because I have friends and my girlfriend is here, but I don't like the gym because I like to sleep every day.
Why don't we get tests every day? We want more tests.
I like this class because sometimes we try to make the class funny but it never happens. I like that we learn a lot. Well, I don't know about other people but especially me, I learn a lot here. What I don't like is we never do something different and it's always the same. To change it we should make something different at least one day a week and the students are not gonna be bored in this class.
I like food. I don't like tests. I would change my brain.
I like to listen to English. I don't like to do group work.
I like vocabulary. I don't like tests. Let's go outside to learn English!
I like to learn vocabulary because it helps my English. I don't like to talk and fight with friends. I don't like the open window because it's so cold. I don't like someone but I won't say who. I think this class is very good, but not very great. If people could speak a lot of languages it would be great because people can understand what you say. And I want this class to have food and drink.
I like when we read in English. I don't like much homework.
I like this class because the teacher is funny and I think it's relaxing.
I think this class is good because it's very funny and the teacher is good. I think maybe this class needs more games.
Don't worry about guys who come 1-5 minutes late and give less homework.
I like English class because he is so funny. I don't have to dislike something. I don't want to change something that is so good.
I like how we learn. I like how the teacher helps us to learn. I think we should watch more videos and discuss them. Also sometimes we should watch a movie.
I don't like people so much. I like that my classmates and teacher are all friendly.
I like the teacher. I like this class.
This class is great. I think we should do more speaking practice.
I like this class because I have a good teacher.
I like inglish se explica bien.
My idea is some teachers are nice like Mr. Goldstein. He is so funny and a good teacher and I like class in English.
Why don't you bring us our favorite foods every day???
I like this class because the teacher helps me to learn English and I like everything about this class. I think the class is perfect because the teacher prepares the students how to pronounce the language and helps me a lot for my future.
Views expressed herein are solely those of the author or authors, and do not reflect views of my employers, the United Federation of Teachers, the MORE Caucus or any other union caucus.
Stories herein containing unnamed or invented characters are works of fiction. Names, characters, businesses, places, events and incidents are either the products of the author’s imagination or used in a fictitious manner. Any resemblance to actual persons, living or dead, or actual events is purely coincidental.