April fools seems to be a constant event in schools. Students try to annoy and antagonize their teachers in colourful ways. Many do this to get attention; others do it for fun. Decades ago, students believed that if they behaved inappropriately, they could actually get the teacher to quit or fired. Here are just 10 case scenarios I’ve witnessed inside the classroom. P.S. No.1 really did happen and is meant to prep you for the other 9 horrifying scenarios.
Case Scenario #1:
Students are attending a grade 9 gym class. The teacher has no control over her classroom. A student arrives late, with a note in her hand. Another asks to go to the washroom. The teacher is angered by the interruption and yells at both students to go to the office. When I say yell, I do mean it in a rooster way. You can see the teacher’s neck veins become visible as she is yelling. The teacher did not last more than a semester in the school.
Case Scenario #2:
A teacher has prepared overhead notes for students to copy. The notes are only 4 pages long with graphs and photos and double spaced. One student decides to anger the teacher by taking pages away and hiding them. The teacher scrambles to find the notes, then goes to photocopy a new overhead. When he comes back…the notes are back on the overhead.
Case Scenario #3:
This is a classic annoyance. Students have chitchats in the middle of a lesson. The chitchats trail to the front of the classroom. It is annoying and antagonizing as well as rude to speak when others speak. It goes against the Tribes program which emphasizes respect.
Case Scenario #4:
It is the last day to hand in papers for high school students. Grade 12 students are scrambling to print out their papers at the library and to fix minor errors. Technology sometimes does not work with humans. All of the sudden 20 minutes before class starts, 10 of the 25 students are standing at the teacher’s office saying that they cannot print out their assignments. The teacher, of course, is angered and does not expect that from students on their way to university. 25 minutes of valuable exam prep time is taken to save work on the teacher’s USB key.
Case Scenario #5:
Teachers get frustrated when students use the following phrases: “I don’t know” and “I cannot do this”. Most teachers have the philosophy that everyone can achieve the same expectations and the same results with the right amount of assistance and the right amount of resources. There is no need for students to give up so easily, unless the teacher is not willing to meet them half way. Teachers face these expressions day in and day out.
Case Scenario #6:
A teacher is in the middle of a lesson. He is being evaluated by an administrator on his teaching methods and skills. All of the sudden…a cell phone rings with Bart Simpson pranks ringtone. The student decides not to pick it up, fearing they will be caught. It is annoying, in a sense that it disrupts others’ learning.
Case Scenario #7:
Students anger teachers by becoming tough. They would use swear words, try to intimidate the latter and sometimes become physical. After bringing an extendable baton to school and getting caught, one student threatened to use it on anyone standing in their way. They even admitted it in their expulsion hearing. It is frustrating and not only angering to see students waste their education on such things.
Case Scenario #8:
A homework assignment is given to all students in the class. The teacher does not tell the students that the assignment will be collected. When the teacher comes to collect the assignment the next day, students give the excuse that they did not complete it. Teachers are angered by this because students are not taking responsibility for their work.
Case Scenario #9:
A teacher spends day and night trying to prepare her lessons and unit plans. She designs learning strategies and activities which utilize all intelligences. When students go to do the test, they fail. The average is below standard. The annoyed teacher must now go back to reteach the material. She merrily picked up from where another teacher left off before going on maternity leave.
Case Scenario #10:
Primary students regularly use the phrase, “You are not my mother and you are not the boss of me” to their teachers. Teachers are hurt by the comments, especially when their students are at a young age.