Cent-lessly Lost

, , , , | Learning | August 31, 2017

(Due to the new education curriculum, there has been a lot of discussion regarding new ways to assess learning, the goal being to move away from standardized tests. We’ve made great progress so far, but decide to use a math assessment package at the end of the year, in order to have some data in regards to the students’ math skills. The goal is to enable us to see where we need more math support. Furthermore, since my class of grade sevens are going to go to the high school next year, we want some data to give the teachers that will have them to further help them out. Prior to testing, we comb through the package and edit it so it focuses on mental math and problem solving. I feel confident that the content is good for my students, since we have a lot of review and money knowledge problems. The test starts and one of my students calls me over to help them with a question.)

Question: “Sarah has $5 to spend on golf balls. Used golf balls are 50 cents and new golf balls are 75 cents. Show all the possible ways Sarah could spend her $5.”

Student: “I don’t understand what the question is asking.”

Me: “Okay, so Sarah has $5, and she has to use all that money towards golf balls. So, you’re trying to see how many she can buy with the prices listed.”

Student: “But those are in cents, not dollars.”

Me: “Exactly, so how many cents in a dollar?”


Me: *growing more and more concerned* “…H-How many cents in a dollar?”

Student: *look of confusion on their face*

Me: “Okay, how many quarters do you need to have one dollar?”

Student: *thinks, then gets excited when they know the answer* “Four!”

Me: “Yes! Now how many cents are in a quarter?”

Student: “25.”

Me: “Exactly, so four quarters equals…”

Student: “75 cents!”

Me: “…No.”

(Normally, I don’t like to give my kids the answers and prefer them to figure it out themselves. For this case, I made an exception. She was then able to figure out the problem on her own, and I really hope that moment of cluelessness was just due to nerves. Even more astounding, we had a transfer student from Asia do that assessment and I only had to explain our currency once before he got it, opposed to the student who was born and raised in Canada!)

The Class Will Receive Multiple Pardons

, , , , , , | Learning | August 31, 2017

(In grade five, I have an awesome teacher that, in addition to giving us an excellent education, has made it her quest to make us more polite.)

Teacher: *says something a student didn’t quite hear*

Student: “What?”

Teacher: “Pardon?”

Student: *louder* “What?”

Teacher: “Pardon?”

Student: *louder still* “What?”

Teacher: “Pardon?”

Student: *even louder* “What?”

Teacher: “Pardon?”

Student: *finally getting it* “Pardon?”

Teacher: “Oh.” *repeats unheard statement*

(She warned us on the very first day that she would play this game, but for the first few months it took some practice. Thanks to her, nearly twenty years later, I always say “pardon” when I don’t hear someone the first time.)

One More Light Out For Feminism

, , , | Right | August 30, 2017

A caller had no Internet service. She had a big power outage and her modem wasn’t getting any power. She said she needed Internet ASAP because she was a doctor and needed it for her “practice.”

To determine whether a breaker jumped or if it was our modem that was fried, I asked her to plug in a lamp or anything else to the plug to see if it lights up. Pretty straight forward, I thought. To which she replied, and I quote, “I’m just a woman. I can’t be expected to know how to do this. Just send a tech.”

Seeing as how feminism had just taken it on the chin by one of their own, I had to bite my tongue to stop myself from replying, “Okay, I’ll send a big strong man to fix that right up for you. Just have a sandwich waiting for him when he gets there.”

What Is The Price To Get Rid Of You?

, , | Right | August 30, 2017

(The following takes place in a store that is clearly going out of business. The sales floor is in a shambles, prices of merchandise have been reduced significantly, and the staff morale is at an all-time low.)

Customer: “Hey, how much is this?”

Coworker: *scans item* “It’s [price], sir.”

Customer: “Can you give me a better price than that? You’re getting rid of it anyway, right?”

Coworker: “It’s still [price], sir.”

Customer: “You know what? I don’t know if I like that attitude of yours. I want to speak to your manager!”

Coworker: “Go right ahead, sir. He’s just gonna tell you the same thing.”

(At this point, our manager walks in.)

Manager: “What seems to be the problem here?”

Customer: “Your employee has an attitude problem!”

Manager: “Sir, I was standing right over there the whole time—” *pointing to a nearby location* “—and I heard the whole thing. All I heard was [Coworker] telling you the price of an item.”

Customer: “Well, yeah, but I don’t like the attitude she was giving me! Aren’t you going to do something about that?”

Manager: “What do you want me to do? Fire her? We’re all going to be losing our jobs, anyway!”

Customer: “I still expect you to reprimand her! That kind of behavior is unacceptable in customer service!”

Manager: “Says the guy trying to haggle like we’re at a god-d*** flea market! I don’t give a s*** anymore. Either pay the price shown on the register, or get the h*** out of my store!”

(Closing times are fun times.)

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It’s The Most Electrifying Time Of The Year

, , , | Right | August 30, 2017

(I am trying to get to Calgary for Christmas. Unfortunately, a snowstorm shuts down my local airport on the afternoon of December 21 before I can fly out, and I wind up spending the night on a bench. There are no more seats available to Calgary before the 25th, so I take a flight to Edmonton on the 24th, reasoning that one way or another, I can get to Calgary from there. The following takes place while I am waiting at a boarding gate in Edmonton to exchange my stand-by ticket for a boarding pass. The flight is maybe 20 minutes behind schedule.)

Teenage Girl: *haranguing the airline employee about the flight being late and not being allowed to smoke in the airport* “I’ve been waiting for TWO HOURS…”

Me: *interrupting* “I’ve been trying to get to Calgary since Sunday.”

Teenage Girl: *spins around and gapes at me* “What?”

Me: *briefly explains*

Teenage Girl: “You need to complain more! I’d have been in their face…”

Me: *interrupting* “Some guy tried that. He got tasered and arrested.”

Teenage Girl: *shuts up and goes back to the lounge*

Airline Employee: “Thanks!”

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