Home Is Where The Work Is

, , , , , , | Learning | February 18, 2018

(It is the 1990s. I am ten years old, and my family has recently moved because of my mother’s job. At my old school, many of the teachers were strict and never forgot to collect the assignments that were due that day. Naturally, I assume this is the norm of all teachers in general, so I am surprised that my new teacher regularly forgets to collect the previous night’s homework. Not wanting to be penalized for turning homework in late, I go up to her at the end of class and ask where I should turn it in, only for her to “remember” and have the class turn everything in. This goes on for a few weeks before some of my classmates come up to me at my desk prior to the start of school.)

Classmate #1: “You need to stop running to [Teacher] and reminding her about the homework. Because of you, [Teacher] called our parents and we all got in trouble. I now have to miss my favorite shows just to do the stupid assignments.”

Classmate #2: “My parents took my video games away for two whole weeks.”

Me: “So, why don’t you just do the homework like you’re supposed to?”

Classmate #3: “Ew, you actually like doing homework?”

Me: “Not really. I would much rather watch TV or play video games, but if I don’t do my homework, I get bad grades and get in trouble.”

Classmate #1: “I know you’re new, so you probably didn’t know, but [Teacher] is very forgetful. She forgets all the time that she gave us homework, and gives us open-book quizzes, instead. Since you came, we haven’t had a single open-book quiz, because you keep reminding her about the homework.”

Me: “And you want me to stop?”

All Three Classmates: “Yes.”

Me: “Sorry, but no. It’s not fair to me; I study and do the work. I should be rewarded for doing the homework, not helping you stay out of trouble because you want to goof off. You do the homework, you study for the tests, and you get good grades; that’s how school is supposed to work.”

(It took a while before I made any friends after that.)

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