Wednesday, October 18, 2017

Punishment, Unusual and a Little Cruel


In the first year of high school math, certain students who are struggling are given an extra period of what is called "math support". All the struggling students. Together. In one period.

This is how difficult classes are constructed.

But, I had two things going for me on this day. One: I had fair warning from the teacher himself and his co-teacher (who had taught all the previous classes that day). Warning and support. And two: another teacher "helped out" (read: did all the work) with the class.

One of the warnings I got was a little trick the teachers used to keep the class in line. Turning on the air conditioning was contingent upon the class' behavior.

I know many parts of the U.S. are getting into fall temperatures. However, I'm in southern California. On this day, our high was projected to be in the upper seventies. (Roughly 25 C.) With it being a sunny and warm day, and us being in a classroom with no open windows, the room got fairly warm. I had been running the a/c all day.

But, with the warning, I turned off the a/c before this class came in. (This class was immediately after lunch.)

Class got started. The other teacher who "helped out" showed up. (There was some question as to whether or not she'd be there on this day. As it sounds like she's doing this extra on her own time, I wouldn't have blamed her for not coming in.) I passed out their assignment, and they got to work.

Slowly, the temperature in the room crept up. And someone asked me to turn on the a/c.

The other teacher then used the a/c to her advantage. She informed the class that everyone had to complete two problems before she'd turn on the a/c. Several students had completed way more than two problems, but several others hadn't even written their names on their paper.

It took at least five minutes (maybe ten) before the stragglers finally finished their two problems.

I was urging them on. I run warm generally, and I was already dripping sweat. (This is normal for me.)

The class was still loud. Several only got those two problems done. But, that class could have gone a whole lot worse. I'm going to have to consider using the a/c to my advantage in the future.

19 comments:

  1. That is clever, if you can tolerate it.

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    1. I'd be more likely to freeze them out, but I applaud Mr. G for his creativity.

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  2. Its good the air conditioning is not controlled from an outside place. I heard our local WalMart has their a/c controlled from a corporate building in Alabama.

    Whatever gets them to work is a good thing!

    betty

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  3. Sometimes it takes a little torture. You'd think the kids who had finished already would be pestering the other kids who hadn't.

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  4. The a/c thing is GENIUS. ....but I tend to overheat in what other people consider "low" temperatures, so idk how that would work for me... Once it goes up past 60 degrees I need the air conditioning.

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    1. Yeah, I was dripping sweat by the time the a/c went on. I run warm as well.

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  5. Man, that is cruel. You're an evil genius when you want to be.

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  6. I like that idea. If it works with kids it is good! I might even try that with the teen that lives with me. She runs hot too!

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    1. It worked with them. I think its efficacy would depend on the group in question, though.

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  7. This is great to use the AC as a tool to manipulate since so many other tools were taken away from you.

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    1. I had never considered the a/c as weapon before. I will consider it in future.

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  8. It's one of those genius moments isn't it. Good thinking.

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  9. Yikes....in some parts of the world that would be considered cruel. I can't take the heat, messes with health issues. Would hate that to be the case for one of the kids.

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    Replies
    1. The ones who it would be an issue for weren't in this class.

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