Tea Is The Warmest Color

, , , , , , | Hopeless | April 14, 2019

(I’ve loved books from a very early age, so when I was growing up it was only natural that whenever I went to a new school, I would very quickly become quite acquainted with the school librarians and their assistants. My high school librarian, an elderly woman, has a reputation for being quite strict, but has been nothing but lovely to me since the first day of school when I eagerly sought out the library to scope out the fiction section. In the second semester of my sophomore year — my 11th year of schooling for the non-Americans — I end up with a free period at the end of the day, which I choose to make into a teaching assistant period for the librarian. One day, I come in during flu season feeling a bit under the weather and I start to check in newly-returned books like I do every day.)

Me: *grimacing as I sniffle a bit but continuing work*

Librarian: “[My Name], are you feeling all right?”

Me: “Hm? Oh… I’m feeling a little sick, yeah. I’m okay, though.”

Librarian: “Oh, well, if you’re feeling sick do you want to just sit in the back today?”

(She’s told me this before on another occasion a month or so ago, but both times I felt guilty about the idea of sitting out when there’s work to be done and I’m not really feeling TERRIBLE, per se… but I have been having a pretty annoying day.)

Me: “Uh… yeah, actually. I think that’d be good.”

Librarian: “Yeah, you can sit and read in the back!”

Librarian’s Assistant: *a woman in her 40s* “Oh, yes, take it easy.”

(I grab a graphic novel off the shelf that I’d been eyeing and head to the back room. [Librarian] follows me soon after, placing a box of tissues on the back desk.)

Librarian: *opening the cupboard* “Would you like a cup of tea?”

Me: *surprised* “Oh, uh… Yes, please!”

Librarian: “Well, we have green tea, some strawberry lemonade, earl grey… What would you like dear?”

Me: *still astonished* “Earl grey is black tea, right? That sounds good.”

Librarian: “All right, then!”

(She put a mugful of water in the microwave to heat up, then gave me the tea box and made sure I knew where the honey and stirring sticks were before going back to her duties. After a few minutes, I was sipping my tea — warm as my heart was by this point — and reading the graphic novel, and I thought about all the mean things my classmates had said about [Librarian] that they would never even dare to suggest if they knew how sweet and grandmotherly she was once you really got to know her. Not only did she and [Librarian’s Assistant] care about me and my well being, but [Librarian] always thanked me for my work when I walked out the door, despite the fact that I was obligated by the school rules to show up and do all tasks asked of me! I’m pretty busy this year, but I still stop by the library to say hi to those ladies, and whenever I hear someone saying something snippy about [Librarian] in passing, I scoff to myself and think about that cup of tea.)

Drunk Spunk

, , , , , | Learning | April 12, 2019

(In forensic science, we’re doing our toxicology unit. The last couple of days have been specifically about alcohol. Alcohol will go anywhere in your body that you have liquid, even crossing the blood-brain barrier. When I tell classes that, inevitably, some boy raises his hand.)

Student: “Does it get in your… y’know… your semen?”

Me: “Yes. Semen has liquid, so alcohol can get in there.”

Student: “So, is it possible for your sperm cells to get drunk and get lost and not be able to find where they’re going? Oh, is that why some babies are born messed up from alcohol?”

We All Need A Daylight Savings Week

, , , , , | Learning | April 11, 2019

(I’m in class at 2:27 pm, and my teacher is giving a test. It’s almost over.)

Teacher: “Right, you have ten more minutes.”

(He writes 1:27 on the board plus 10 equals 1:37.)

Classmate: “It’s 2, not 1.”

(The teacher looks at her and then at the board, sighs, and fixes his mistake.)

Classmate: “Daylight savings time, remember?”

Teacher: “Did that happen this week?”

(Later, he is explaining his two extra credit assignments, which are to go to events and write quick papers about them.)

Teacher: “This one is happening tomorrow, March 27th. This one is happening this Friday, April 5th.”

Class: “That’s next Friday.”

Teacher: *looks at them and then looks closer at the date* “Oh, it’s next week. I’m an hour behind and a week behind!”

Male Students Have Trouble Concentrating

, , , , , | Learning | April 11, 2019

(I am teaching the solutions unit in a high-school chemistry class. When we get to the part about concentration of solutions, I ask the class:)

Me: “What does ‘concentration’ mean?”

Male Student: “To cut off.”

Me: *confused* “What do you mean?”

Male Student: “You know, to cut off. Like on a bull!”

(I had to try so hard not to facepalm in front of my students. Vocabulary is still important, people.)

The Sound Of Silence

, , , , , , | Learning | April 9, 2019

(Our band director is spending the whole class period talking about scales and music theory. The first chair tuba pipes up and mentions how he memorizes particularly difficult scales with lots of sharps. And the director yells, saying that will only make it more difficult. Later in the period, he asks the band to see if anyone can play an extremely difficult scale he calls out using the confusing method he had presented. A couple of people try and fail. Then, the first chair tuba tries and plays it perfectly.)

Band Director: “That was brilliant! How did you do it?!”

Tuba: *explains method he mentioned earlier that the band director said was wrong*

(Silence.)

Band Director: “That doesn’t prove your point.”

(I rather think it did, and I will be using it in the future.)