Sunday, December 18, 2016

A Day in the Life

My day Friday did not start well. In my morning class is a young computer genius. Every time I mess something up on the computer, he calmly walks up, pushes a button, and all my problems disappear. Naturally I resent his being smarter than me when he is only 13 years old. Who the hell does he think he is anyway?

As if that weren't enough, he's learning English way faster than he's supposed to. For example, the other day I wrote a DO NOW assignment, and rather than simply answering it, as the other students did, he decided to challenge me. Here is the assignment:

DO NOW--Mr. Goldstein thinks you should study 200 hours a week. Is that a good idea? Why or why not?

It's a simple enough question. Yes or no, and give a reason. But instead of simply answering, he comes up with questions for me. Can you imagine? And not only that, but his use of English was pretty much perfect, which is also outrageous, because he's a beginning ELL. So here's what he says to me;

"Let's pretend there are 24 hours in a day. And let's pretend there are 7 days in a week. That means there are only 168 hours in a week."

You can see why I was upset. First of all, it's an English class. Now here is this kid, showing no respect at all, and doing math in English class. That's pretty goshdarn disrespectful if you ask me. Then, when I explain to him that I'm going to fail him for no reason, he tells me I can't do that. Can you imagine the audacity? Speaking to your teacher like that?

But that's not all. Later in the day, my co-teacher told me I have to do stuff. Now I'm pretty busy, and I haven't always got time to do stuff. After all, I have a lot of stuff to do, and when am I gonna find the time to do even more stuff?

Later, I'm in the department office, and I see my friend the Italian teacher. I recount all the injustices I've dealt with that day, and explain to her that I'm mad as hell and not going to take it anymore. She's sympathetic and understands all the outrages I've suffered. I tell her since I represent all the teachers in the building I need someone to represent me, and she says yes, she'll do it.

So we go in to see the AP, and I explain to her that my co-teacher is asking me to do stuff, and that I don't want to do it. And no way should I have to do it, since I do enough stuff already. Then my advocate speaks up.

"Well it depends on what stuff she's asking you to do."

What? That wasn't what we just discussed. I look at her, incredulous. What happened to my unflapping advocate, the one who was gonna defend my rights no matter what? I give her a quizzical look. She responds.

"Well, depending on what the stuff is, it might hurt someone if you don't do it."

Wow, with an advocate like that, I may as well represent myself. What's up with all these conditions? We hadn't discussed modifying my demands in any way whatsoever.

"Wait a minute," I protest. "Are you trying to tell me there are consequences for my actions? That's unacceptable."

I walk out in protest. There's just so much one teacher can put up with in one day.
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