Thursday, May 12, 2016
English class. The assignment: read the book they had selected for a book report.
I like these sorts of plans. (Their teacher does this because he's fairly certain they aren't doing the reading at home. They're freshmen, so that's a good assumption.) In an ideal world, I'd get to pull out a book and read along with them. But this isn't an ideal world.
They whined and complained. They hated their book. (Then pick another one! The book is student choice, so they could pick something they'd like that fit the parameters.)
Ernesto wasn't going to read. The first thing he asked me was if they were going to get a break. (My "no" elicited a "bitch" remark from another student. Second time in two weeks.) Apparently, his settling down to read was contingent on knowing the reading would be broken up somehow.
Ernesto did eventually get silent. It's easy to tell which classes normally read quietly. They're the ones I can settle to silence with minimal effort (and a warning that the names of those that refuse to comply will be left).
But Ernesto refused to read.
I know this, because he barely glanced at his book. He fidgeted. Did all the annoying things kiddos do--drop noises, the requisite restroom break, significant looks at his neighbors (in communication). In short, he did anything and everything he could do while not talking (and not pulling out his cell phone) to entertain himself besides read the book in front of him.
Which is why I couldn't sit and read with them. It felt like the only thing keeping him from beginning to talk (well, it did stop the drop noises) was my attention on him. My glare. That he saw that I was watching him. Him and the about one-third of the class who were engaged in similar behaviors.
Either that, or they kept pulling my attention. There was no way I could get immersed in any story.
This makes me cranky.
And when I'm cranky, I express my displeasure in my note. With names.
It's small comfort. But then again, I've met this teacher. I don't imagine they're going to enjoy the consequences of their actions.