Banded Together To Get Their Answers

, , , , | Learning | June 2, 2017

(Due to a scheduling mishap, a required math class conflicts with several other classes. The math class is split into two sections and I am assigned to TA the new section.)

Professor: *reading off a test* “—so we can see on question four, I asked you to describe what’s wrong with the analysis—”

(A student raises her hand.)

Professor: “—in which we have three populations of mice, and we’re trying to see how much they weigh—”

(The student starts wave her hand.)

Professor: “—but half our mice are—”

Me: “Uh, professor, you have a question.”

Professor: “Oh! Sorry, sorry. In the future, if I don’t see you, don’t be afraid to call out and let me know!”

(He answers her question and goes on.)

Professor: “—but it seems like most of you missed part two—”

Student #2: *hand raised* “Professor…”

Professor: “—but I think that’s because the wording wasn’t clear in—”

Student #2: “Professor!”

Me: “You’ve got another question.”

Professor: “Ah! Sorry. I’m half-deaf; you may have to make some noise. Yell. Blow a whistle. Don’t be shy!”

(The next class, the TA’s can all tell that something’s off. The students are fidgeting and far too focused for a math lecture. But they’re paying attention, so we don’t complain.)

Professor: “—but of course this won’t work if they’re all the same height. Now if we have two populations.”

(A student raises his hand.)

Teacher’s Assistant #2: “Oh, s***.”

Student: *quietly* “Professor?”

Me: “What?”

Teacher’s Assistant #2: “One of the classes that conflicted with the old lecture time was band practice.”

Professor: *still oblivious* “If the populations are—”

(At this point, “When the Saints Come Marching In” roars out of the back of the classroom as half the marching band stands up. The professor happily waves his pen to conduct them and claps when they’re done. However, he did institute a rule that future questions cannot be preceded by more than three instruments or more than one second of music.)

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