Category: Teachers

Technology Fail Leads To Win

| Amsterdam, The Netherlands | Teachers, Technology

(I am very forgetful, so I do not turn off the sound of my phone during classes. I can do this pretty safely as usually no one texts or calls me at all. I’m sitting in a classroom well towards the back. Note that this is a pretty large classroom, and can seat about 70 people. The teacher is giving his lecture and the class is really quiet. All of a sudden my phone receives a text message. I know the teacher does not appreciate people having their phone on during class at all, so I put on my best poker face and pretend it’s not me. Everyone starts looking around but because the phone is in the pocket of my very thick coat, which is right next to me on the bench, they do not spot it. The person next to me gives me a suspicious look but doesn’t say anything.)

Teacher: “Who was that?”

(Silence:)

Teacher: “Hmm… Was that the projector? That thing has been doing odd things all morning…”

(The teacher gave the projector another suspicious look before resuming his lecture. I felt my face burning but I was really happy the technology at this university fails so often!)

Wasn’t Calculating On That Outcome

| IL, USA | Math & Science, Teachers

(We are in an advanced math class in my junior year of high school. Our teacher is new, mainly hired on to coach volleyball. She doesn’t have a very good temper and while she’s good at math, she doesn’t teach it well. This is an advanced class of pre-calculus with analytical geometry. One of the smartest students in class likes to know as much as possible.)

Classmate: So what IS calculus?

Teacher: *annoyed* “What do you mean? It’s calculus. It’s an advanced type of math.”

Classmate: “Well, geometry deals with lines, shapes… that sort of thing. What do we do with calculus?”

Teacher: “It’s not that simple.”

Classmate #2: “Okay, so what would we use calculus for in real life?”

Teacher: *now angry* “I don’t know! Why does it matter? All you need to know is that you’re in this class and you’re learning pre-calculus.”

Classmate #3: *under breath to me* “…Seriously?”

Still Taught You Something Thirty Years Later

| USA | Teachers

(When I hit high school, I coincidentally ended up with several of my mother’s old high school teachers, including her science teacher.)

Mother: “Oh, you got [Teacher]! He was one of the hardest teachers I ever had! I did this one project, and I worked so hard on it, but he gave me a ‘C.’ I was so angry with him. Good luck this year!”

(Instead of being difficult, this teacher frequently did movie days, showing us old sci-fi films from the ‘60s and ‘70s. One day, a student asks about the movie days.)

Student: “Mr. [Teacher], why do you always show us these old films?”

Teacher: *with joking gusto* “It’s the future!”

(Yeeeaahh, my mother had gotten Mr. Teacher fresh out of school when he was still in Hardest Teacher Ever mode, and I had gotten him 30-plus years later, when he was coasting until retirement. My mother was thoroughly annoyed about the unfairness of it all.)

Lacks The Computing Power To Understand

| USA | Teachers, Technology

(I am a graduate level student. I am a full-grown adult and so is everyone else in my class. I do not have a laptop or tablet, so I switch between taking notes on my latest model of [Smartphone] and paper and pencil. I often look up theorists or writers and bookmark them for later. My friend, in the same class, has an ancient laptop that is at least 7 or 8 years old but works fairly well. She also goes between a notebook and computer. My professor calls me in for a one-on-one meeting.)

Professor: “I find it very distracting and upsetting that you are on your phone so much during class. It’s a very small group and very noticeable.”

Me: “Oh! No, I have a smartphone, and I’m using it to look things up and make notes, sometimes order books or papers.”

Professor: “It’s very unprofessional to be texting.”

Me: “You do realize my smartphone is more advanced than [Other Student]’s computer, right?”

Professor: “She is not texting on her computer.”

Me: “Well, I’m not texting either, but you can send texts and messages from the computer to people’s phones. The only inherent difference between the two of us is that my system is smaller and more advanced with a touchscreen.”

Professor: “If you want to bring in a laptop, that’s fine, but I expect your phone to stay in your pocket during class.”

Me: “If you prefer us not to have electronics that’s fine, but you can’t single out my phone without including everyone else’s laptops and tablets.”

Professor: “Phones are not computers! This is very different!”

(I never did convince him that smartphones are computers, but he eventually stopped complaining about my phone after I made an effort to show him what I was doing on it.)

The Teacher Forgot All Your Birthdays

| Lithuania | Bad Behavior, Children, Teachers

(I am in first grade. I am very excited to start learning but, honestly, I am not the brightest kid. On our first day, our teacher lines us all up by height and tells us each to say our name and then say our birthday. I am a bit was scared when it was my turn to say it.)

Teacher: “And when is your birthday?”

Me: “I don’t know.”

(This seemed to anger the teacher even further as a few previous kids didn’t know their birthdays either. She stood all the kids who didn’t know their birthdays in a separate line and started to shout at us.)

Teacher: “How can you all not even know your own birthday?! Now, I want you all to go home tonight and write your birthday on a sign and hang it around your neck and come to school with it, understand?! Not one of you dare come without it!”

(I was terrified since I couldn’t think of a way to make a sign myself and was almost in tears. Another girl was unfazed, though, and just told me she wasn’t going to make one, but I honestly believed what the teacher was shouting. When my mom picked me up I didn’t tell her anything since I was too embarrassed to tell her and only had one thing to ask.)

Me: “Mom, when is my birthday?”

Mom: “Oh, it’s [Date].”

(The next day no one showed up with any signs around their neck and the teacher seemed to have forgotten the incident all together.)

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