It was 7th period at the continuation high school. We spent the period reading a play (well, actually a teleplay of this). After, they had questions to answer. During the last five minutes of class, I collected the packets with the play and their work. Then, dead silence.
It was eerie. They were all sitting in class, staring at me. Most other classes get into groups and talk for that last couple minutes, but not these kids. The silence stretched out...
"Someone, tell a joke..."
Of course, none of them got the reference. I had to explain it to them (although I forgot the correct name of the movie...). I told them it was a good movie. I told them they should seek it out and see it. They just stared at me.
Generally, I'm okay with silence. When they were working on the questions, the silence was great. And I don't mind having their eyes on me, especially while I'm explaining something or giving instructions. But we were done. I didn't need their undivided attention.
I tried other things. Did they have a good weekend? Nothing. What did they think of the play we read? Again, nothing.
Then the bell rang. And they were gone.