Friday, January 2, 2009

The First Day of English Class

A while ago, the world's hottest English teacher asked me how I would go about teaching an English class. I answered simply... I would berate the shit out of my students, starting on Day One.

The first thing I would do is make them read one of my old Grammar War blogs (this one). Naturally, I would expand and expound on the topic, but you get the point.

Well, in case you don't get the point: I will promptly inform each and every one of my students that the very language they claim to know and love is as Greek to them as, well, Greek. 'dey no English lyk 'dey no 'da bak uf 'der handz.

The second thing I would do is make each and every student write a book report on a venerable British classic: Where's Spot? That's right, assholes... you'll be doing a book report on "see spot run." And the caveat? Simple sentences only. Subject. Verb. Object. That's it. Anybody who breaks that rule fails miserably.

Why would I do this? Well, because I highly doubt many incoming Freshmen even know what a subject, verb, and object of a sentence actually is. Never mind a direct object, or a gerund, or even a fucking pronoun.

Day Two would only get worse and by then, hopefully, I'll be down to six or so students, earning the same pay for less work. Why teach 20 stress-inducing losers when I can whittle it down to a handful?

Oddly enough, there are supposedly a few teachers at a North Carolina community college that are going to attempt this method. We'll see, though, as public school teachers tend to be a cowardly lot when it comes to pushing envelopes.

The moral of this rant? Find out where this method is being used and sign the fuck up.

If you're not afraid, that is.


Anonymous said...

Student retention is a big deal. I would recommend keeping the students until at least the 10 percent period is over before scaring them into dropping. ask the english teacher, she knows what i'm talkin about.

Posted by **JEAN** on January 3, 2009 - Saturday - 6:20 PM

Anonymous said...

If you ever apply for a teaching position, show them this blog entry. It'll save our educational system from an unnecessary expense.

Posted by Introspective Prophesier on January 5, 2009 - Monday - 3:35 PM

Tom said...

my wife actually teaches some high school english--it's freaking amazing how many kids get into high school not knowing how to write a simple paragraph; isn't that something you normally learn in grade school?

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