May 9, 2013

Follow your bliss: "Jeff Bliss launched into a tirade after being ordered to leave his World History class at Duncanville High School in Texas..."

"... reportedly for asking too many questions. His impassioned speech telling his teacher Mrs Phung how to do her job, secretly filmed by a fellow classmate, has gone viral since it was posted on YouTube earlier this week."

242 comments:

1 – 200 of 242   Newer›   Newest»
AprilApple said...

A "peace" of his mind?

Chef Mojo said...

Awesome.

Matt said...

The student was out of line and needs to be punished. I would also, if I was an administrator at the school, take a closer look at this teacher's performance.

AprilApple said...

He's right. We need more of this.

"If you would just get up and teach them instead of handing out a freaking packet. There's kids in here who don't learn like that. They need to learn face to face."

Our public education system - run by unaccountable bureaucrats and unions - is failing our children. The dude points.

West Texas Intermediate Crude said...

ignorance.

West Texas Intermediate Crude said...

ignorance.

Marshal said...

The DM's on fire today.

Also available: the story of a bear catching a monkey in a bicycle race and eating it. I think we need another post.

Scott M said...

@Matt

Given the rash of students attacking teachers recently, I'd say the student was both well-spoken, relatively respectful, and kept his anger mostly in check.

Bob Ellison said...

It's easy to see in this rant the things you wished you'd said to the crappy teachers you had. I'd want a little more data on this case to pass judgment.

bagoh20 said...

The problem for him is not just the apathy of the teacher, but also his classmates. They mostly don't share his passion. Maybe 10% are like him, and they need to be free of the tyranny of equality. There really are too many teachers sleeping through the job. It's impossible to do it right without a real passion for it, and there is no room for passion in a state run, top down system based on job security above all. There should be more places for those with above average motivation - both teachers and students.

MadisonMan said...

When a teacher loses control of the classroom, as happened here, bad things happen. This is not something that should be discussed in the classroom; it's wasting other students' time.

Jeff Teal said...

Had one of those teachers in a sophomore geography class.More interestednin where he could score some good weed than teaching.The student does not need to be punished-he already has been by being taught in a government school.

Kevin said...

Given the screen cap I thought he'd speak Stoner, but instead he spoke Street. That was off-putting for me, but I guess given the rest of the class that's the milieu.

He also should have known when to quit. The stupidity of the last few seconds undercut everything else he said.

bagoh20 said...

I'm sure the teacher is following the state's instructions perfectly. That's where his beef should be.

Matt said...

Scott, that is setting the bar awfully low. The student was behaving inappropriately and should be punished accordingly. His indignation may have been righteous but he was still out of line.

DADvocate said...

it's wasting other students' time

Most of high school is a wast of time, interruptions or not.

Kelly said...

I'm familiar with those packets he is speaking of because that is what my daughter brings home. Teachers rarely teach out of a book anymore. I don't know if it's because the books are bad or if the packets are easier.

phx said...

Don't give up on a kid like that.

DADvocate said...

The student was behaving inappropriately and should be punished accordingly.

Yes, we need nice, little automatons who sit there passively and accept whatever crap we ram down their throats. How else will they be ready for adult life?

Becon said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Becon said...

The comments calling for this student's punishment, however right he may be, are amusing.

Children are forced to attend schools. Then we punish them for getting out of line when the experience is a bad one.

Seeing Red said...

Read Sarah Hoyt's account of when her kids were young and what she had to go thru.

I think my kids will either have to send their kids to private school or home school.

It's getting bad.

Chef Mojo said...

Actually, he didn't speak Street. He used Street tone and gestures, but his vocabulary was very intelligent and informed. That's a bright kid. Probably belongs in an AP class, where his interest and passion can be suitably addressed.

I don't doubt that he's probably quite capable of teaching that class himself, and making it interesting to boot.

bagoh20 said...

"This is not something that should be discussed in the classroom; it's wasting other students' time."

Optimally, yes, but the kids also need to hear what he said. It's them who are being robbed, and not in any small way. They are having their whole lives poured down the drain.

As I was watching, I was thinking what a fantastic opportunity he just handed that teacher. If she was just big enough to do something valuable like ask him to state his ideas again and then tell the student that:

"He has a point. I'm not doing my best. None of us are. How can we fix that? This subject is wonderful and full of value to you both professionally and personally, and I want you to get as much of that as possible. We all have to be here anyway, so let's have some fun and get something from it. How can we do that better from here on. Lets have some suggestions, and the good ones, we'll do starting today with this. Please sit down and lets get some other ideas added to what you said. Thank you."

Paddy O said...

I had a US history teacher who went through the motions, assigned questions at the end of the chapter as homework. I realized he didn't read them. Just checked to see they were written, and how much.

I was a self-learner anyhow, reading Michener books at home, reading all sorts of stuff. School was a waste of my time, more than a waste, an interference. But it's what people did. Jump through the hoops, don't blame others for holding you back when the world is out there for the learning--now even more so with the internet.

I had read Dave Barry Slept Here a couple years earlier. That was my downfall for this class. I quit reading the textbook. I answered about a paragraph like I cared, then the rest of the question, and later questions, like Dave Barry would, entirely making up answers, making me laugh. History turned into a creative writing training.

I got an A in the class. Because I wrote a lot.

Mark said...

The packet is required so that the kids are briefed on what their standardized test will ask.

The red shoes and repeated hair brushing are a good eminder of the obvious attention seeking. I doubt this isthis kids first rant about how everyone is wrong.

Just another teenager who knows it all. Worth taking a look at the teacher, but the folks like this in my high school now are 25 years older and with the same lack of accomplishments.

Matt said...

Those who think the student should not be punished need to consider the precedent you will set. The other student ask, "What happened to you?"

"Nothing!" And then behavior continues to trend down in the classroom.

We have NO IDEA if this teacher actually stunk at her job. We got a short clip that shows a student clearly out of line. If what the student contends is true, I would fire the teacher (if possible... unions and all that); however, you cannot allow students to behave this way when they feel like it.

Do some of you actually believe he should not be punished at all?

Shanna said...

I got an A in the class. Because I wrote a lot.

That's awesome.

I think AP/Honors classes tend to be better than regular classes, or at least that was the case when I was there. You get all the people who care in the same classes and the teachers are bound to be a little more interested. My brother's experience in high school was completely different from mine.

AprilApple said...

I'm glad he gave that teacher, who appears as if she is asleep at the wheel, a PEACE of his mind.


I also hope she teaches them to dream of world PIECE.

Shanna said...

Although talking to my coworker, they now have a million AP classes in stuff like photography, and lots of people take them so it may be completely different now.

Diamondhead said...

The student seems to be implying there is such a thing as a bad teacher. We know from Matt Damon that this is not the case.

Matt said...

Bagoh, that is an unlikely scenario but, if it did happen, that teacher would immediately go from loathed to loved. Of course, if the teacher had that attitude, they probably wouldn't suck in the first place!

phx said...

Yes, we need nice, little automatons who sit there passively and accept whatever crap we ram down their throats. How else will they be ready for adult life?

Yes this is how should act in adult life. Try it on your boss and see!

Seeing Red said...

Good for him, he wants to learn.

AJ Lynch said...

My father was an 7th - 8th grade teacher. When a student was out of line, he'd grab them by the collar and run them to the back of the classroom where he'd jam on the brakes and stop short of impaling the kid's face on a coat hook. Of course that was in the 50's and 60's so he never got any parent complaints.

tim maguire said...

Get a haircut, hippie!

acm said...

The kid is 18. He doesn't have to be there, and he's old enough to know that there's a process (yes, a frustrating and often ineffective one) for reporting a state employee who really is sucking at his/her job. He comes across like any other bratty teen who just knows how he could do a better job than the teacher, or the manager at Subway (who, by the way, is totally wrong about hairnets!) . You gotta touch his heart, boring teacher-lady!

Seeing Red said...

Matt, where have you been?

The precedent was set decades ago.

bagoh20 said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
phx said...

Get a haircut, hippie!

Romney would give him one!

Seeing Red said...

Good for him, he wants to learn.

Mitchell the Bat said...

That kid's got a bright future on the internet giving people unsolicited advice they'll never follow.

William said...

You can probably learn as much from a bad teacher as a good one. A great deal of one's success in life is predicated on how well one negotiates hassles with incompetents.

Becon said...

phx wrote: Yes this is how should act in adult life. Try it on your boss and see!

The worst thing that happens is you get fired.

This kid is forced to go to school by the state. And he has no means of exit if his parents can't afford an expensive private alternative on top of the taxes they already pay. A little civil disobedience in this case is a good thing.

DADvocate said...

Those who think the student should not be punished need to consider the precedent you will set.

A wee before our graduation, a friend of mine was called into the office for not wearing socks to school. This was 1969 and boys HAD to wear socks to school. During the confrontation with the principal, my friend ended up punching the principal. For that he was suspended from school the rest of the week and not allowed to go through graduation ceremonies.

Many of us would have loved to get out of school for a week and not go to graduation, but we refreained from punching the principal anyway. The principla did the right thing and left the field of education a few years later. He truly sucked.

You also miss that the kid was punished. He was sent from the classroom and probably faced other consequences. Judging from your insistence and stridence, you seem to want to come down on him with a ton of bricks for something that was virtually a natural reaction to an unnatural situation. High school sucks big time. It's a pathetic waste of time for the most part. Start thinking about solving that problem rather than beating down and bullying mouthy kids. Learn to enjoy mouthy kids. One of them might teach you something.

bagoh20 said...

His beef clearly is with the state requirements, and the teacher is probably as much a victim of it as he is. I don't know, but I suspect they not only have targets, but specific direction about exactly how to teach it, probably written by people who never taught in a classroom or were no good at.

If she wants to keep her job and benefits, she will ruin those kids and waste their time or else. This is our fault. Elections matter.

bpm4532 said...

Based on the kid's reasoned argument and well-controlled frustration/anger, I'd bet he's already broached this subject with the teacher AND the administration.

John Lynch said...

Student needs to test out or go to a charter. He doesn't need to be in this class.

Teacher needs to work on classroom management.

bagoh20 said...

I'm talking out my ass, but I bet with a month's instruction by the right person, that kid would be a better teacher than the one he has.

Lyssa said...

I'm intrigued by the folks saying that they had "a teacher" in x grade and x subject who was just going through the motions. I'm younger than most here, though old enough that my education pre-dates most of the complaints that you hear today, and I'd be hard pressed to think of more than a few teachers who weren't just going through the motions.

We routinely took "free days" and watched movies or played cards. The math teacher I had twice was well known to just check the homework to make sure that you had listed enough answers for the assignment (If it was do problems 1-30, we could literally just write 1. (any number), 2. (any number), on up to 30). Most were within a few years of retirement and spoke of nothing else. It was ridiculous.

I'm sure that Shanna is right that it was better in the AP/Honors classes, but I took almost nothing but those, and it was still pretty bad.

Rabel said...

I'm with Spicoli on this one.

DADvocate said...

Try it on your boss and see!

I have a choice of places to work and professions in which to work. As a mature and infinitely enlightened adult, I've found more effective ways to challenge my boss(es). My boss often jokingly refers to my propensity to say things.

Plus, the company I work at wants people to challenge the way we do things and for us to find more effective and efficient methods, not read silly packets and parrot back what we read. Anyone in our company who wants the kind of structure forced upon high school students won't last long.

bagoh20 said...

Lyssa, I think you are right; teachers have always had a dual role including a big dose of babysitting, but they din;t have to. We all had teachers like that, but a few never did that. I had classes that I couldn't wait to get to because they were packed bell to bell with interesting material delivered well, with challenges and interaction. That's where 90% of the learning happened. It was possible for all classes to be like that, except most teachers were not up to it. It seems to me like today there isn't even room or a culture for that kind of thing. It may be the union mentality that says "hey, slow down, your'e making the rest of us look bad."

R. Chatt said...

I got in trouble once in high school, a history class. Everyone was talking, etc., when a substitute teacher was in charge, but somehow I got "punished" by having to prepare a lesson for the class. It was such a good idea that every one in the class got to teach a class, which was really fun. It was AP though.

That teacher could have turned things around and allowed that talented and frustrated student to teach a class. Maybe it would have inspired other students as well. Or maybe they prefer "packets." Processed learning.

acm said...

He may want to learn, but that's not what he's carrying on about. He wants the teacher to make him excited! If he really wants to learn, he's an adult free to learn any which way he chooses.
He chose to go to public high school, which caters to one learning style. It sucks that public school works that way, it really does. But adults don't go around yelling at people who don't make the rules and interrupting class for the people who do learn that way or don't have a choice (because they are 15) and are trying to make the best of it. If he feels strongly about attracting more engaged, passionate teachers, he can vote for pols who support vouchers, or advocate for whatever education reforms he likes. Instead he threw a tantrum full of eye-roll-worthy cliches demanding that the teacher excite him and touch his heart.

Renee said...

I'm not going to watch the video. Because I don't want to endorse it.

I've had an issue like this, and I went to my dean and explained the situation. I didn't make a scene in class. It was handled professionally, and resolved.



SeanF said...

Could one of the brilliant computer hackers out there please write and release a cellphone virus that flashes a big "TURN YOUR PHONE SIDEWAYS, YOU IDIOT" on the screen when people are shooting video in portrait orientation?

ndspinelli said...

I have taught high school history. This kid could have said this in any high school in the U.S. and been spot on!

Renee said...

"Instead he threw a tantrum full of eye-roll-worthy cliches demanding that the teacher excite him and touch his heart."

Sometimes learning is boring. No matter how many games I try with my children, they have to memorize multiplication facts.

Matt said...

Dadvocate, why the projection? Why not simply ask, "How would you 'punish' the kid?"

If I were the principal, I would have a clear-the-air meeting with the student and the teacher, he would have to write a letter of apology to her and, if the teacher does in fact suck, I would try to get her dismissed.

What would you do?

acm said...

To be clear if he were an actual kid, who is forced by law to attend school, and forced by circumstance to attend this school, I'd be a lot more sympathetic.

But, this is an adult, who initially wasn't forced to go to school---he dropped out in his freshman year. Now he's convinced not only of the value of education, but about the best way for his teacher to administer it (hint: it involves heart-touching). This makes him seem quite obnoxious. I wonder about where he became convinced of his brilliance...maybe the parents who didn't insist he finish 9th grade the first time around have something to do with it?

Seeing Red said...

Whoa, "the man" made the rules so the teacher has to be boring?


Anyone remember Richard Mulligan either in a movie or a TV show being a history teacher and had the class re-enact Washington Crossing the Delaware?

Or "Back to School?"

Dust Bunny Queen said...

If all the "teacher" is going to do in her classroom is hand out packets and say...."read this", then maybe the schools should go to an on-line learning format.

At least the students would be getting better feedback from the teacher-bot than the lump on a log that most breathing teachers seem to be.

X said...

judging by his grammar, he doesn't seem well educated which is odd since all teachers are great.

bagoh20 said...

"Try it on your boss and see!"

If you work at the right place it could be the opportunity of a lifetime, and this may turn out real well for this kid in the video.

At my job, I've had employees with no credentials or experience in an area speak up and suggest that the status quo was stupid, and they turned out to be right. I have given such people opportunities to design products and build equipment with no previous education or training. If they want it that bad, they may be on to something. Some of them have gone on to develop successful patented products that have crushed the competition, and are copied around the world. Others became supervisors over people they used to work for. Merit is primary with me. At the beginning, they were just dreamers to most people. My path has been the same, so I see potential maybe where others don't.

Unknown said...

Bravo to the student. He is right about a lot of that. He has a right to be angry about having his time and intellect wasted. He has a right to be angry about the waste of taxpayer money used NOT teaching his fellow citizens (one day fellow voters). This may not have been the best way to address his concerns, but the so-called teacher doesn't seem at all angry or intimidated - just weary.

I identify, I must confess, because I reamed out a music teacher in my high school many, many years ago for expecting a tone deaf student (friend of mine who couldn't carry a tune in the proverbial bucket) to sing well in a musical production. You don't berate and embarrass a student in front of everyone for what he has no control over so *shrug* I told the teacher off. BTW, this same teacher once threw a baton at the band (trombone section right behind me). I'm happy to say the principal was in secret agreement with me and I got off lightly.

There does come a point when anger and frustration boil over. And what can the student do? Who will back the student?

DADvocate said...

No matter how many games I try with my children, they have to memorize multiplication

You don't have to make it a game to make it interesting and exciting. The desire to entertain our children and make everything a "game" probably hurts them more than helps them. I shudder every time I see a mini-van going down the road with its little movie screen going.

Turn off the damn movie and talk to your kids. Discuss their lives, what you see along the road, etc. When my kids were in the car, I always left the radio on but turned it down far enough that conversation was easy. We've had more good discussions in the car than anywhere else.

edutcher said...

Sorry, that kid was way out of line.

Sounds like the teacher wanted them to read and he wants a show. Don't work that way.

A lot of learning is drugery, not entertainment. A good teacher who pounded arithmetic in our pointy little heads whether we wanted it there or not told me that (thank you, Charlie Boning). There's no fun way to learn multiplication or pronouns or the Civil War.

And I also think somebody else put some, if not all, of those words in Spicoli's mouth.

BarrySanders20 said...

If that student inspired one kid in that class to become curious and seek knowledge, then he probably had more of an impact in one minute than the teacher had all semester spoon-feeding the kids from "packets" of undigestable goo.

Matt said...

Seeing Red, the movie was "Teachers" with Nick Nolte. I loved the bits with Richard Mulligan.

ricpic said...

Frickin' A!

DADvocate said...

Why not simply ask, "How would you 'punish' the kid?"

is projection a new concept you learned today? There's no projection going on here. I wouldn't punish the kid. I'd talk with him, work something out, but not punish him. If you're going to play with psychological terms, check out positve reinforcement, negative reinforcement and extinction and how they might apply to not just this instance but the classroom in general so that such incidents wouldn't occur. Laying on the leather is the lazy man's solution.

Bender said...

When a teacher loses control of the classroom, as happened here, bad things happen. This is not something that should be discussed in the classroom; it's wasting other students' time.

A good teacher would be quick enough on his feet to use this to his advantage to use it as a teachable moment. A good teacher would tell the kid to stay and would engage in a real dialogue and discussion, speaking with the students and not at them.

bagoh20 said...

" they have to memorize multiplication "

I distinctly remember learning multiplication tables in third grade from Mrs. Robinson, a stunning redhead. In fact, even today when I try to recall some, I picture them on the sheets she handed out just as they looked. It helps me recall the answer.

I loved it at the time, and she did make it a game with competition, and help to bring up the slower kids. I didn't even realize I was learning something. Maybe the answer is stunning redheads. I love me some ginger.

Henry said...

"Hey kids, what happened at school today?"

"Nothing."

phx said...

Turn off the damn movie and talk to your kids. Discuss their lives, what you see along the road, etc.

I'm completely with you on this. It's amazing how many parents I see chatting on their phone to no end while their children are ignored. It's pretty sad.

JAL said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Bender said...

As for "wasting the student's/teacher's time" --

In too many of my classes, I've had the attitude of "whatever" toward the teacher, who more often than not was not really teaching me anything that I could not get out of a book or on my own. In too many classes, I spent the time just wishing it would all be over so I could go do something more important.

Renee said...

Sorry, but when you are 18 and only at a sophomore level in terms of credit. There is no TIME to be enlightened. He's already behind the ball, and he's just going to get the basics.

If he really likes history, watch some Ken Burns on PBS on the weekends.

No time for arts and crafts.

JAL said...

Didn't the kid mention that the teacher had told the class previously that this was her paycheck?

Now that was inappropriate.

I was actually surprised -- you may diss him for the "touch the kids' hearts" and "excite them" -- but that is actually what a teacher should be trying to do. And it only comes from loving what you teach. Or loving actually teaching someone anything and seeing them "get it."

I realize now, too late, what awesome teachers I had. We lived in an community where education was valued highly and as I think back I can only recall one high school teacher I had who wasn't exceptional.

I thought that's what teachers were. Good. Smart. Unfortunately I wasn't mature enough to benefit from it as I could have. But I think some of it found its way into my innards ;-)

There was this one math teacher who could take a problem a student had screwed up, put it up on the board, work it through and then smile and say "See, no matter how you do it, it comes out right ;-) ;-)" That, and he could draw nearly perfect circles behind him on the board while he was facing the class.

bagoh20 said...

" Maybe the answer is stunning redheads."

No, in fact, I'm sure of it. I could use me some teaching even today.

Matt said...

Dadvocate, sorry for the confusion, when I said "projection" I meant you have this idea of me in your head and are trying to guess what I am thinking based on your dopey notion of who I am. So, "projection" was not the best word choice.

You do know there is some room between letting him get away with it and "laying the leather". So, what about the next time he decides to rip on a teacher? Or another student decides to do the same? The precedent you have set is that it is acceptable behavior.

jacksonjay said...


Maybe the answer is stunning redheads. I love me some ginger.

Now that is some wisdom I can agree with!

Paddy O said...

Shanna, you're right, I had friends in AP history and it was very involved. I should have been in that class, I suppose, but I didn't care to do more work for high school. Lots of issues going in the rest of my life then, and school just was something I did the least amount to get through. Then became a good student my sophomore year in college.

Lyssa, now that I think about it, it really was only a few teachers that were just going through the motions. I guess I had a good school. Almost all of my teachers cared, most about the students and most about the subjects.

edutcher said...

bagoh20 said...

they have to memorize multiplication

I distinctly remember learning multiplication tables in third grade from Mrs. Robinson, a stunning redhead. In fact, even today when I try to recall some, I picture them on the sheets she handed out just as they looked. It helps me recall the answer.


Presumably, this was on a very warm day in late Spring and she leaned over to put it on bag's desk.

Jay said...

phx said...

Yes this is how should act in adult life. Try it on your boss and see!


You obviously have no creativity, are a slave to a pay check, and are going to work a long time to retire poor.

Matt said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Matt said...

phx said...

Yes this is how should act in adult life. Try it on your boss and see!


This struck me as a fair observation. So much so that I thought bagoh had made the comment!

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Sounds like the teacher wanted them to read and he wants a show. Don't work that way.

Sounds like ALL she was doing was giving them packets of stuff to read and not doing anything else.

Of course they should read. But there has to be MORE than just reading.

This is how we were taught and who we learned in school. (before there were teachers unions btw)

1. Read the assigned work. That was your homework.

2. Next day, or sometime later, in class the teacher would discuss the reading material, go over the content, bring up ideas about the material, encourage classroom discussions and questions, make connections to previous lessons and connections to current events.

3. Later in the week, there would be a test or quiz on that particular topic to see how much of the material you had retained. If many students failed or didn't do well on the test, we would repeat the process. Generally that didn't happen because we all completed step 1 and the teacher got us engaged on step 2.

To just be given a bunch of crap to read in class while the teacher sits on her ass and does crossword puzzles or something is NOT teaching. This really happened in one of my daughter's school years. Her fourth grade teacher did nothing in the classroom to teach and read novels or crosswords, while the kids were given things to read or do. They were not allowed to interrupt her reading. I INSISTED that my daughter be transferred to another classroom. IT took quite a bit of insisting and I can be VERY insistent if I need to be. It was well known that to be in Mrs. XXXX's class was a waste of time, a waste of entire school year. Mrs. XXXX had tenure and couldn't be fired.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

gaah!....How we learned....not who we learned.

MadisonMan said...

Henry, that made me laugh. I know for sure that if this happened in my son's classes, I'd never hear about it from him.

Dust Bunny Queen said...

Edit to my post. I assume that my teachers were not unionized when I was in elementary school and high school. Graduated 1968. Maybe they were, but we students were not aware of such things then. Unlike now, where the students are taken to union protests to act as props for their teachers.

Misty said...

Why should he be punished? Because he is trying to tell the teacher that she isn't doing her best. I feel that he held himself together the best he could and when the teacher said "Your wasting my time" I would have snapped. NO he wasn't wasting her time - As he's an ADULT 18 yrs old and going back to school to further his education he has the RIGHT to say what he feels he needs to. This teacher needs to be looked at and maybe she needs to find another job field to work in, Maybe corrections because it seems she doesn't care about the students!

jacksonjay said...


Just to inform the masses, teachers are NOT unionized in Texas!

Chances are this kid was the given the choice to return to school or go to jail. Seen it a hundred times! The story indicates that he dropped out and returned recently! Parents would be surprised that a number of students in public school are on probation or have a deal to go to school or face incarceration!

cold pizza said...

Some kids don't fit in the machine. My youngest, a HS Junior, will be going to summer school again because she failed her first semester English class. As an former English Lit major, I'm slightly horrified by that, but her talents lie elsewhere. She drew the picture I use as my avatar when she was 15--and she's gotten much better since then. It would be nice if she made As.

With apologies to Frost:

Some say this class will end in As
Some say in Cs
From how I test on certain days
I like to think that I'd make As
But if it brought me to my knees
I think I know enough of school
To say that for my passing, Cs
Are also cool
And I'd be pleased


-CP

Matt said...

"She drew the picture I use as my avatar when she was 15--and she's gotten much better since then."

Wow. That is really well done. Cool!

James said...

More background...


Duncanville student's teacher rant goes viral

DUNCANVILLE, Texas -

A Duncanville High School student who was kicked out of class, lectured his teacher on his way out.

FOX4's Calvert Collins spoke exclusively with him after his rant, which was recorded by a fellow classmate.

His passionate speech has gone viral. It's gotten tens of thousands of hits and comments after it was posted online.

Jeff Bliss said he was upset by what he says is his teacher's lack of passion for her profession.

He said he was standing up for his education but admits he could have handled it differently.

He hit a boiling point over a test in his World History class Tuesday morning.

"My question was, why we don't get the same amount of time to take the test as the rest of her classes," said Bliss.

He says his teacher replied with profanity telling him to stop his questioning and leave. That's when he erupted.

Bliss says in the rant, "If you would just get up and teach them instead of handing them a freaking packet, there's kids in here who don't learn like that."

Even though the video is viral, he said he doesn't want all the attention.

"I don't want people to look up to me as something to idolize or anything, I'm just as human as the next person," said Bliss.

He said he's received support from teachers and administrators.

Bliss said his mom was proud of him but said his attitude could have been better.

He said he backs up his outburst with his past because he dropped out of high school after his freshman year. He later returned and said he takes his schoolwork seriously. He asks that his teachers do the same.

Duncanville ISD released a statement reading, "We want our students and teachers to be engaged, but the method by which the student expressed his concern could have been handled in a more appropriate way."

The Duncanville sophomore has not been punished for insubordination. He tells FOX4 he is meeting with administrators Thursday morning.

Matt said...

Misty said...
"Why should he be punished?"

Because his behavior was inappropriate. He very well may have been right! (And probably was.) But his behavior was inappropriate for the classroom. That does not mean he needs to be suspended or expelled but letting it go just encourages more of the same behavior from him and other students.

Renee said...

James,

Thanks for letting us know that he is apologetic on how it was handled.

That means a lot.

Matt said...

"He said he was standing up for his education but admits he could have handled it differently."

Geez, even the kid knows he behaved inappropriately! Come on people!! Nuance! You can like what he said and still believe he should face the consequences.

It isn't civil disobedience if it's shrugged off. (I could have sworn that that was a criticism of either the occupy tools or the Madison capitol sit-in idiots.)

pduggie said...

Julie Phung sure likes the makeup videos

http://www.youtube.com/user/MrsJPhung1

pduggie said...

Comments (related to history or asianness, not makeup) from Julie Phung's youtube comment list

"God forbid, do not let the Inuits her you call them "Eskimos"...!"

"As my husband would say to me .. I get in trouble with Mom for evything YOU do...aim white guys, hes Vietnamese!"

"Here's my classes vote for 'pharse of the week" : Nile leaks, TUT tweets.
Nice job - my WHIST classes seem to dig your stuff!" (she shows some youtube vids on history to her kids, I guess)

ok that's about it... because 98% of the rest is comments on makeup and "haul" videos.

DADvocate said...

Geez, even the kid knows he behaved inappropriately!

The point of punishment, which is generally a poor way to control and teach behavior, in this case is to teach the student that he behaved inappropriately. He already knows that. So, what is the point of punishment in this case except to extract revenge on an uppity student? Seems, Matt, you've taken a very rigid stance devoid of nuance yet you're yelling nuance and demading a overly strict enforcement of what you think the rules should be.

elkh1 said...

Matt said.
"Why should he be punished?"
"Because his behavior was inappropriate."

Yeah, but he might have saved a whole bunch of kids from reading packets and dropping out. The teachers should be accountable. He might "ruin" his own life, but the teachers have ruined numerous lives, ruined the students' desire to learn. Wish there are more kids like them. The adults, including their parents, are not doing their job. They keep paying teachers more and more, years after years, to warehouse the kids, and turn them out to the street unprepared when they turn 18.

I bet the kids have to surrender their phones now when they go thru the check points every morning to go to class.

Disgraceful.

DADvocate said...

Duncanville ISD released a statement reading, "We want our students and teachers to be engaged, but the method by which the student expressed his concern could have been handled in a more appropriate way."

The Duncanville sophomore has not been punished for insubordination. He tells FOX4 he is meeting with administrators Thursday morning.


Good for them. Frankly, I'm impressed, at this point.

Michelle Dulak Thomson said...

Lyssa,

I'm intrigued by the folks saying that they had "a teacher" in x grade and x subject who was just going through the motions. I'm younger than most here, though old enough that my education pre-dates most of the complaints that you hear today, and I'd be hard pressed to think of more than a few teachers who weren't just going through the motions.

Maybe I just lucked out, but most of my teachers (in a public school system in upstate NY) were excellent. I will leave out the Social Studies teacher who thought it a good idea to devote several days of class time to showing that execrable movie of Ivanhoe, on the grounds that it had something to do with history. Wrong on so many levels.

Matt said...

Dadvocate said I want to "extract revenge" on this kid. You are a fucking idiot. Especially if you think saying "my bad" absolves people.

elkh1 said, "The teachers should be accountable."

Who said they shouldn't? This is not a situation where one person is right and the other is wrong. The kid behaved inappropriately. If what he says about the teacher is true, she should be fired. This is not that hard!

DADvocate said...

There's also another side to the punishment issue. One of the few times I got punished in school, as I was an exemplary student, was for an incident where a bunch of us threw wadded up pieces of paper in light fixtures while the teacher was out of the classroom and caused a lot of smoke from smoldering paper.

The entire class was threatened with punishment if the villians didn't turn themselves in and the class was left alone and unsuperviesed to decide what to do. Although nearly the entire class had been involved, another guy and I volunteered to take the rap. We were punished with a couple of whacks with a wooden paddle. But, we were class heroes. The punishment meant nothing in terms of consequences. Common sense told us not to do it again and push our luck. But, some kids happily suffer the consequences to be the class hero or class clown and get the attention.

DADvocate said...

You are a fucking idiot.

That's highly inappropriate language. You should be punished and would be if you went to my high school. There's no good reason to punish this kid other than wanting to bully him to show him whose boss, teach him a lesson, revenge, and mindless adherence to rigid ideas of what the rules should be. Glad I'm not your kid.

Michelle Dulak Thomson said...

DBQ,

Mrs. XXXX sounds like a ... "piece of work," shall we say?

Teachers that can't be bothered tend to migrate upstairs to school administration, and then (more damagingly) to teaching the education courses actual teachers need to be certified to teach. My husband is most of the way through his certification, so I know quite a bit about the process.

Matt said...

So is saying someone wants to "exact revenge" from a kid.

"There's no good reason to punish this kid other than wanting to bully him to show him whose boss, teach him a lesson, revenge, and mindless adherence to rigid ideas of what the rules should be."

There is a good reason and I have already stated it earlier in this thread.

"Glad I'm not your kid."

Fuck you, asshole. Jesus, you think you can just have a reasonable difference of opinion with someone but they have to accuse you of wanting to "exact revenge" on a kid and when you don't put up with their crap they say you are a bad parent. What an asshole.

DADvocate said...

Fuck you, asshole. Jesus, you think you can just have a reasonable difference of opinion

It'd be the best fuck you ever had.

Who's talking about being reasonable?

Matt said...

And what was this "revenge" I wanted to "exact" from the student? I said he should write a letter of apology to the teacher. Wow! I am vicious and heavy handed! How will the kid ever recover from that beat down!?

Bender said...

Yeah, great attitude and language there yourself. Don't think that you are any better than these students you are criticizing. From your remarks, you are little more than a bully and punk yourself.

DADvocate said...

Forced apologies. Those are always effective.

Matt said...

Moron. It is about punishing the kid but not in a way that pulls him out of school or reflects on his permanent school record. If you prefer, he could write 100 times on the chalkboard, "I will not interrupt class when I have issues with the teacher." Now tell me how that equates to "exacting revenge".

Bender said...

Let's be clear, far too people who are thugs and bullies go into professions like teaching and law enforcement. That way, they can go around asserting their authority, thinking that their punk conduct makes them big. It doesn't.

Matt said...

Bender, this concerns you how? You think saying a kid should be punished by writing a letter equals "exacting revenge"? You want participate or just make fly-by attacks?

Bender said...

This concerns me because you are here shooting your mouth off, punk.

Matt said...

Bender said...
Let's be clear, far too people who are thugs and bullies go into professions like teaching and law enforcement. That way, they can go around asserting their authority, thinking that their punk conduct makes them big. It doesn't.

5/9/13, 12:52 PM

The relevance of which is...

We really don't know anything about the classroom situation other than what was in the short video clip. If the kids statement in it were accurate, it seems the teacher is much more indifferent than a thug or bully.

Bender said...

And we could do without the profanity and blasphemy, asshole.

Bender said...

This kid isn't the issue here. YOU are.

DADvocate said...

So, what is the point of punishment in this case except to extract revenge on an uppity student?

That's a question, not an accustion. Maybe you should have studied grammar a little more closely. You chose to take it as an accusation.

Matt said...

Bender said...
This concerns me because you are here shooting your mouth off, punk.

5/9/13, 12:54 PM

Shooting my mouth off? Read the whole thread. Things were fine until some idiot decided to equate making the kid write a letter of apology to "exacting revenge". I am intolerant of jerks.

Matt said...

Jesus, Dadvocate, what is the implication of your question? "The only reason to punish the kid is to exact revenge." Otherwise you could just ask "Then why punish the kid?" which, by the way, I answered earlier in the thread.

Bender said...

You're acting worse than him. But at least this kid was intelligent and used respectful language. In short, he's better than you.

Matt said...

Bender said...
You're acting worse than him. But at least this kid was intelligent and used respectful language. In short, he's better than you.

5/9/13, 12:59 PM


Troll harder. One, this is not a classroom. Two, I am responding to dopey personal attacks.

DADvocate said...

Jesus, Dadvocate, what is the implication of your question?

ANd, you talk about projection regarding me. Wow. I'm not responsible for your paranoia.

Inga said...

Hi Matt, I see you're getting' some love from your fellow righties. LOL.

Matt said...

Dadvocate said, "Seems, Matt, you've taken a very rigid stance devoid of nuance"

How so? How is saying the student behaved inappropriately and should be punished by WRITING A LETTER and the teacher is doing a poor job (if the accusations are true) and should be fired "a very rigid stance without nuance". Seriously, your criticism makes no sense. I did not say the kid should be suspended or expelled. What is so terrible about what I said I would do that you conclude I want to "extract revenge"?

Michelle Dulak Thomson said...

Matt,

This is the Dadvocate comment that evidently set you off:

The point of punishment, which is generally a poor way to control and teach behavior, in this case is to teach the student that he behaved inappropriately. He already knows that. So, what is the point of punishment in this case except to extract revenge on an uppity student? Seems, Matt, you've taken a very rigid stance devoid of nuance yet you're yelling nuance and demading a overly strict enforcement of what you think the rules should be.

In response, you call him a "fucking idiot."

Step back, take a deep breath, and think about which of you two is making more sense here.

tmitsss said...

Classroom discipline. Sometime in the late 1950's a student in my mother's class threw a paper airplane. She made him fold 100 more. He still loves to tell that story.

Matt said...

LOL. Hi Inga. Are you sticking around? A fresh start?

Inga said...

Oh no, I'm still the same lovable Inga! Carry on Matt, I'm enjoying this.

Matt said...

Michelle Dulak Thomson, go read what I wrote up to that point and describe how my position is rigid and without nuance and how my suggestion to punish the kid can only be to "extract revenge".

Matt said...

Inga said...
Oh no, I'm still the same lovable Inga!


Ah, that is disappointing.

Matt said...

DADvocate said...
Jesus, Dadvocate, what is the implication of your question?

ANd, you talk about projection regarding me. Wow. I'm not responsible for your paranoia.

5/9/13, 1:04 PM

So, you are saying that you don't believe that people who think the kid should be punished are only doing so to "extract revenge"? If so, then your earlier 'question' makes no sense. Particularly since justification for punishment was provided before you asked your 'question'.

Since you had already been told a reason for punishing the kid that had nothing to do with "extracting revenge" then why did you ask the question that way?

A more sensible question would have been, "Other than to maintain order in the schools, what reason is there to punish the kid?" You do think having order in schools is important, right? But instead you asked your loaded 'question' which had already been earlier answered.

Matt said...

Michelle Dulak Thomson said...

Step back, take a deep breath, and think about which of you two is making more sense here.

5/9/13, 1:06 PM

Michelle, read my previous comment (at 1:24 PM). Now, who is making more sense?

Alex said...

Oh look it's a white male standing up to the matriarchy. Naturally Matt wants to punish him for dissing the black teacher.

Alex said...

Matt... you can go to hell mate.

Rusty said...

phx said...
Yes, we need nice, little automatons who sit there passively and accept whatever crap we ram down their throats. How else will they be ready for adult life?

Yes this is how should act in adult life. Try it on your boss and see!


I did this morning.
He fucked up. Cost his company time and money.
He didn't fire me.

Alex said...

Yes it's more important to keep this fake PC "order" then to educate kids. I love this kid's passion.

Rusty said...

Alex said...
Oh look it's a white male standing up to the matriarchy. Naturally Matt wants to punish him for dissing the black teacher.

Ms. Phung is probably Vietnamese.

Lem said...

I hear a black militant accent on the kid.

Did anybody pick up on it?

Other than Ingas, I haven't read the comments.

Matt said...

Alex said...
Yes it's more important to keep this fake PC "order" then to educate kids. I love this kid's passion.

5/9/13, 1:28 PM

I don't recall that being the argument. Very selective reading!

I also enjoyed the kid's spirit, though his choice of time and place were poor. Personally, I hated high school and considered graduation more a matter of surviving than succeeding.

furious_a said...

That could have been a teachable moment were that teacher capable if teaching.

Matt said...

Furious, bagoh touched on that earlier, too. However, if it is good teacher, I don't think it gets to this point in the first place.

furious_a said...

black militant accent

There was a young Malcolm X-esque lilt and cadence in the student's delivery. It held my,attention.

Alex said...

Jeff Bliss = another crack in the dam of public education.

Shanna said...

On the AP thing, I had two regular classes in high school.

In my bio class somebody broke one of the sinks and there was water gushing everywhere and in Chemistry people had pizzas delivered through the windows and broke cruicibles and other assorted nonsense. Oh, and one time half the class got in trouble so they all got to go outside and think about it while the 'good' students got to stay in class and learn chemistry.

Lem said...

This kid was channeling Cornell West.

furious_a said...

distinctly remember learning multiplication tables in third grade from Mrs. Robinson, a stunning redhead.

Lucky bastit. I learned from old-school French-Canadian nuns in full habits and the only thing stunning about them were their ruler strikes.

furious_a said...

The only thing harder than getting kids to learn is getting kids to care.

At least this kid cares.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@Kelly: I don't know if it's because the books are bad or if the packets are easier.

It's because students can't read.

Seriously. They can't read sentences more complicated than subject-verb-object. I teach college students, mostly juniors and seniors. I am currently conducting research on what they can and cannot read.

Shanna said...

They can't read sentences more complicated than subject-verb-object.

Is your research looking into that whole 'sight words' way of teaching? I was tutoring a little girl in high school and she was completely lost if she looked at a word she didn't know. Didn't even know where to start. Freaked me out.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@Shanna:Is your research looking into that whole 'sight words' way of teaching? I was tutoring a little girl in high school and she was completely lost if she looked at a word she didn't know. Didn't even know where to start. Freaked me out.

No, I'm looking at how they interpret a sentence, not so much how they read the actual words, but I have noticed the sight-reading problem. (Students can't tell the difference between "redemption" and "remediation", or "superstition" and "superposition", because they are taught to read the first and last letters of a word, then guess at it...)

One thing I observe is that students cannot get time order from prepositions.

"Go to the grocery store after you stop at the bank but before you get your hair cut".

This time order is "bank" then "store" then "haircut", but lots of students aren't sure what the "before" modifies so some will think the haircut comes first.

So for classroom stuff like assignments or exam questions I write short sentences and put everything in chronological order:

"First, stop at the bank. Then, go the grocery store. Finally, get your hair cut."

furious_a said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sam L. said...

MadisonMan, I don't see the teacher losing control. I see the teacher not even interested in control, let alone teaching. She sounds completely bored to me.

Paddy O said...

Is there an AP Althouse blog? Sometimes the comments get really bogged down in these regular comment sections and I don't feel like I'm getting the most out of each topic.

Shanna said...

@Gabriel Hanna, that is all pretty fascinating.

they are taught to read the first and last letters of a word, then guess at it

See, this just seems insane to me. That's how you might do if you are speed reading, but for regular, every day reading? How in the world is this a good idea?

Shanna said...

@Paddy O, if my high school experience is any judge, you should stick with the regular crowd. More field trips and movies.

furious_a said...

Those who think the student should not be punished need to consider the precedent you will set.

Right now the kid's just an internet viral hero. Punish him and Duncanville ISD will have a martyr on their hands.

The President will interject himself to say that the school district "acted stupidly", that if he had a son, he'd etc., etc, and that if this outburst saves the future of even one child, it will have been worth it.

Matt said...

furious, what kind of punishment do you have in mind that would make him a martyr?

Eight is Enough......... said...

hey Matt...did you read where he said the TEACHER responded with profanity? Because that's accetable to you?

I'm the mother of 3 and stepmom of 5 more. If any one of my kids stood up for their education like this, I would not only APPLAUD them, I would follow it all the way to the top of there were issues. This kid wasn't screaming, wasnt cursing (freaking and bitchin are fine with me)

Baron Zemo said...

You know if you did that to the nuns who taught me when I was a kid you would have a metal ruler embedded in your forehead.

Of course the nuns were real teachers not what we have now.

Matt said...

Eight is Enough......... said...

hey Matt...did you read where he said the TEACHER responded with profanity? Because that's accetable to you?


Oh my, do people even read? How many times have I said that if what the kid said is true the teacher should be fired? The third post on this whole thread - which was before any accusation of the teacher cursing was presented - I said, "The student was out of line and needs to be punished. I would also, if I was an administrator at the school, take a closer look at this teacher's performance."

Eight, is it not possible that BOTH the teacher and the student behaved inappropriately and that BOTH should be punished accordingly? Why does it have to be one or the other? Geez!

Bender said...

You know if you did that to the nuns who taught me when I was a kid you would have a metal ruler embedded in your forehead

The good sisters who taught you would not have simply handed you a packet of material or a book and said read it and left it at that.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@Shanna: I got into this kind of sideways.

About 20 years ago a survey was developed to check students' understanding of physics concepts. The surprising result was that students who did well solving numerical physics problems did no better on the concepts than students who weren't good at solving numerical physics problems.

Well, everyone's been using this survey since, and the questions are all complex compound sentences in passive voice and Latinate vocabulary. Furthermore, they are HALF-sentences and the answers are the OTHER half of the sentence. Readable but could be much easier to read. I am finding that many of the students understand my simpler versions much better and their answers (sometimes) improve.

Eight is Enough......... said...

I still don't see how Jeff was out of line. He kept calm. His points were valid and well thought out.
I see many punishable offenses in schools...this is by far NOT one of them.
I had a teacher (history actually) who we used to call King Copier..We had packet after packet after packet. BUT he was engaging, he was always questioning our questions.
She's just there...Do teachers have thankless jobs? yes....do they sometimes take advantage of their situations...you bet.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@Bender:The good sisters who taught you would not have simply handed you a packet of material or a book and said read it and left it at that.

Of course we don't know that's all that this teacher does, we only know that's what she's accused of doing.

I give my students packets, not to read, but with simple conceptual problems. The packets go with the textbook. Most of my students will do anything but read a textbook (because, in many cases, they can't read their books and comprehend them). They are always trying to get me to TELL them the answers.

But the answers are in the book--the point of the packet is not to get the answers, but to read the book. It is the only hour of the week when I know for certain that they have opened their textbooks.

The quizzes I give on chapter readings typically have a 95% failure rate.

Matt said...

Eight, this is what you wrote:

"hey Matt...did you read where he said the TEACHER responded with profanity? Because that's accetable to you?"

We can agree to disagree about punishment for the student but I would like for you to point out the comment that I made that is the basis for your quoted statement.

Baron Zemo said...

I think the difference is that the nuns actually cared.

This teacher obviously doesn't just based on her responses in the video.

That why all teachers should be replaced by computers so all learning can be done on-line. It is going to happen sooner than you think.

bagoh20 said...

I love the phase: " you've taken a very rigid stance devoid of nuance"

because, that's what she said.

Ha!

bagoh20 said...

And yes, it was a "phase", but I'm past that now...unfortunately.

Birches said...

In most cases, I would side with the teacher, but any teacher who was remotely engaged in her craft (and cared about the rest of her students) would have at least gotten out of the chair to stop the disruption.

The kid went on for so long because she was doing absolutely nothing to stop him. I'm sure he would have left if she would have just gotten up.

So I say good on him and whoever filmed it. It deserves to be seen.

Gabriel Hanna said...

@Baron Zemo:That why all teachers should be replaced by computers so all learning can be done on-line.

Cheating. There is no way to know if anyone in an online class is actually doing their own work.

If you want to learn outside a classroom, nothing is stopping you. Books, libraries, and college credit exams have existed for a long time now.

Online learning is being pursued only because it cuts costs and increases revenue.

Without some kind of exam that you have to take to earn the credential, credentialed online learning is worthless because of the cheating issue.

Skeptical Voter said...

Having been kicked out of an 8th grade math class for "speaking up", I can sympathize with the kid. My sin was in suggesting that the teacher had computed something incorrectly (on the blackboard) and if he just changed a "6" to an "8" his problem would be solved. Well I was right---but I got to spend the rest of the class hour running laps in the school yard. Fortunately the teacher was also the school counselor and I got placed in a class more "appropriate" to my talents the next day. I'd been in a small town out of state school system before coming to a San Diego suburb for the 8th grade. The morning after my "running cure" they tested me and bumped me up a couple of academic tracks.

Bright kids are sometimes a problem--and sometimes a joy--for teachers. The trick is in motivation--and also in knowing when to leave them alone.

Rusty said...

The quizzes I give on chapter readings typically have a 95% failure rate.

Just for shits and giggles forget the textbook for a day and have them bring in whatever reading material they like to read at home. (short of porn). Have them read it out loud in class. You'd be surprised how into it they get.

Baron Zemo said...

Why is it cheating when a kid learns how to use a computer to find things out? To learn? Isn't that what this is about?

It used to be you had to go and memorize things by rote. That is no longer the fashion. I bet you don't know more than one or two phone numbers. All the rest of them are in your phone. It is a new age. Using computers would make it exciting and fun for children.

Plus the computers won't try to molest them.

Baron Zemo said...

Plus we don't have to get a pension fund or medical insurance for a machine.

Shanna said...

It used to be you had to go and memorize things by rote. That is no longer the fashion

That doesn't mean they shouldn't still be required to do it. Give them some shakespeare or state capitals or whatever and let them at it. Memorization is good for you.

Baron Zemo said...

Plus the machine won't join union and go on strike.

Baron Zemo said...

It's a win-win all the way around.

Bender said...

I have also given handouts, either outlines I wrote, written versions of my talk, or articles by others. But they are in order to supplement the classroom discussion, not replace it.

Baron Zemo said...

You should memorize the things you want to memorize.

Like your all time favorite football players.

YA Tittle. Tucker Fredrickson. Spider Lockhart. Jerry Shay. Brad Van Pelt. Harry Carson. Mark Bavaro. Frank Gifford.

And of course Kyle Rote.

That's what you call learning by rote. Just sayn'

Balfegor said...

Re: DADvocate:

Yes, we need nice, little automatons who sit there passively and accept whatever crap we ram down their throats. How else will they be ready for adult life?

Others have already more or less said this, but self control is one of the most important disciplines one can learn as a child. I suspect it's linked with a number of other advantageous characteristics, e.g. the ability to delay gratification, future time orientation, etc., and politeness.

David said...

Matt said...
The student was out of line and needs to be punished. I would also, if I was an administrator at the school, take a closer look at this teacher's performance.


Yeah. I'd make him wear a gold star in the middle of his forehead.

Bender said...

It is one thing if the teacher has to play dentist pulling kids' teeth in order to get them to have a discussion. It is another if she does not even attempt to ask questions or, worse, answer them. Especially in history class -- that should lend itself naturally to an interesting back-and-forth.

CEO-MMP said...

Yep. Even back in the olden days when I was in high school there was a teacher who's whole approach to teaching was to act out the previous night's Letterman.

Seriously.

And this--THIS--at a Catholic school.

tiger said...

"Bob Ellison said...
It's easy to see in this rant the things you wished you'd said to the crappy teachers you had. I'd want a little more data on this case to pass judgment."

A little back-story would help.
The guy is obviously frustrated about a lack of actual teaching and good on him for saying so but AIS a little history would help.

Bender said...

Baron --

Usually you are very sensible. But about this memorization thing -- Could you please tell us maybe two or three specific things you learned in, say, 10th grade?

Marshal said...

Baron Zemo said...
Why is it cheating when a kid learns how to use a computer to find things out?


The issue is someone else using the computer to find things out.

Anyway, proctored exams are an easy solution.

Bender said...

Me?
I have forgotten 95 percent of the specific facts I learned K-12. I could not even tell you the names of all of the courses I took in college, much less say five words about what was taught in probably all of them.

But fret not.

That's what we have books for.

Bender said...

What is more important than memorization of raw facts is understanding.

If you understand, then you can figure out problems yourself or at least know where to look up the answer.

That was the problem with the Baltimore Catechism -- plenty of emphasis on rote memorization, but most folks raised by it could not go on to explain what the answers meant.

Let your food be your medicine, and your medicine be your food. said...

I had a world history teacher my freshman year of high school that was wheelchair bound. He constantly complained of intense back pain and would literally come to class completely doped out on heavy duty painkillers. I distinctly remember watching the jungle book cartoon in class and being asked to write a paper on it. I was the only one that turned it in and that was the only assignment we had... all year.

I went to college and majored in liberal studies to become a teacher myself. After 3 years of observing teachers from a variety of schools and grade levels in the public school system.. I left horrified. These kids have all the potential in the world to be hungry for knowledge. It's the teachers RESPONSIBILITY to light that fire in them. I went in wanting to learn from these teachers, and I left knowing that I'd be better off teaching a majority of those classes myself.

It's sad. Very, very sad.

Baron Zemo said...

Bender.....
Usually you are very sensible. But about this memorization thing -- Could you please tell us maybe two or three specific things you learned in, say, 10th grade?

No problem.

Never play cards with a man called Doc. Never eat at a place called Mom's. Never sleep with a woman whose troubles are worse than your own

CEO-MMP said...

Matt said...

And what was this "revenge" I wanted to "exact" from the student? I said he should write a letter of apology to the teacher. Wow! I am vicious and heavy handed! How will the kid ever recover from that beat down!?"

I'd never do it. It wouldn't end well. Either the punishment would be lifted/changed (in which case, what lesson have I learned) or...well, there is no or, really.

Some kids you can punish, some you can't.

This kid dropped out of school, then went back. He's a smart kid (and apparently is a legal adult to boot) who cares about his education.

Why would you want to punish that out of him, when you could, you know, punish the teacher who's obviously failing not just him but all the other kids.



Baron Zemo said...

Man that freaking Angie Rizzuto. She had a lot of problems.

Balfegor said...

Re: Bender:

What is more important than memorization of raw facts is understanding.

If you understand, then you can figure out problems yourself or at least know where to look up the answer.

That was the problem with the Baltimore Catechism -- plenty of emphasis on rote memorization, but most folks raised by it could not go on to explain what the answers meant
.

You need a healthy amount of both -- if a student doesn't have any facts memorised and has to look everything up, it's hard for me to see how he could ever learn to really think. He's just navel gazing and looking up crap to support his theory at that point. His thinking would also be narrower, limited to what he specificly chooses to look up. But sometimes what's important isn't what you know you need to look at, but the information you fortuitously happen to have memorised and packed away in the back of your head.

CEO-MMP said...

@Matt:

Eight, is it not possible that BOTH the teacher and the student behaved inappropriately and that BOTH should be punished accordingly? Why does it have to be one or the other? Geez!"


Really? That's your solution? Punish everyone?

Yeah. That won't harden the kids opinion of his teacher, and it certainly will help show the teacher how she's wrong.

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