12/10/2007

Why do they got to be like this

There is something different about private school teachers from public school ones. They always have tighter rules and one of them always seems to have something out for you. My guess is that because they teach at a place that gives a better education, they think to themselves that they can never be wrong. They wont admit that they were defeated by a student of theirs, and had to realize who is really right. I'm not talking about all of them but I am speaking of a few of my teachers. I will admit that most of the time they are right in these contraversies but they think they are always right and don't even acknowledge that you have something to say. I realize that you are reading this and thinking to yourself that this kid is only 16 so of course he is going to have something negative to say about his teachers, but I believe its the truth.

Matt and Josh and Mr. Wilson, if you are reading this, it not you because youare all cool.

15 comments:

RespectMyAuthorita said...

no this is true as a general statement i would say. I experienced it, many others at logos did. Even those who were good kids, if they corrected a teacher, they got it. because at logos, in a lot of cases the students were smarter than the teachers. This was always funny. I had a few teachers that just didnt like me and were out to get me. And its not me just saying that. I have proof. Its just true of anyone with authorita and power, they are like policemen, they just want to know they can "get" anyone they want. and sometimes they just want to punish those they feel need it. A lot of teachers who are even cool teachers will still do it, because they can.

Lincoln Davis said...

Gunn, I agree with you. The emphasis of my Logos education (which was a good one) was on teaching us how to think, but as soon as I demonstrated the ability to think, to question, to challenge, it was curbed by the raw authority of I'm-older-than-you. I still learned a lot, much of which I use every day, and I'm grateful for it, but the school could have stood to be a little more self-critical and humble.

Matthew N. Petersen said...

Jason,

I laughed when I read your paragraph. It probably happened more often; but the one time I clearly remember was when I was in fifth grade: we were supposed to be writing, but I think by and large we were talking. A certain Mrs. Scheibe who was helping out remarked "I can hear you talking a lot better than I can hear you writing." I immediately replied "that's because you can't hear people writing."

:-)

RespectMyAuthorita said...

sure u can, with a pencil, when 25 kids are writing, you just hear a bunch of scratches on paper.

Matthew N. Petersen said...

I'm not disagreeing with you, it just made me laugh.

the Emperor of Ice Cream said...

Reading this reminds me of a debate I had with a certain private school teacher who believed that F. Scott Fitzgerald's masterpiece, "the Great Gatsby," had no literary merit. At the time I was thinking the same thing then that you are now, but, recently, I talked with the same teacher and s/he said that s/he was almost ready to incorporate the book into his/her curriculum. Sometimes, it just takes a few years for private school teachers to realize the errancy of their ways.

Thomas Banks said...

Has The Man been trying to get you down lately, Gunn?

Actually, I partially agree, and did have one or two teachers in my private school experience that had no business teaching. Same discovery at public university.

Evan G. said...

I didn't think this many people would agree with me. Awesome.

Andrew Michael Jacobs said...

no, gunn, i totally disagree. i was the proudest guy ever and the most confrontational with the teachers. what i found was that they always let me get away with my disruptive and contrary comments because they understood that i couldn't be wrong. especially your dad. he really thought highly of my intellectual prowess.

Matthew N. Petersen said...

I didn't agree or disagree, I just laughed with Jason.

I think part of the problem is that (for instance with whether you can use calculators) reasoning will never cease, and the teacher must say "no, just shut up and take the test."

And sometimes we can see that something is a bad step without quite being able to explain why.

And the rules at Montrose are all "work hard, and cultivate an atmosphere of hard-work" (say that Monday morning and see what Mr. Owsley thinks). But a "it's ok, I'll be nice here" attitude doesn't work in enforcing that kind of rules. The infractions must be stopped imedately, not because they are really bad, but because they multiply. If Sam and Michelle start laughing, pretty soon Bree is, and then Mikyla and London and the rest of the Scott table are, and then everyone is looking up to see what the commotion is. And then before getting back to work everyone comments to their neighbor a little on something off topic. And that spreads, etc. etc.

And my experience at Logos was different from your brother's. Yes of course Logos could use more humility. As could everyone. But though some of the teachers said things that I thought were ridiculous, I thought they were always ready to engage us when we challanged their perspective. I remember once when your brother was directly praised for making fun of a teacher's pet theory. (On a test.)

And a critical part of learning to learn is learning to say "though he can't logically answer me, he is wiser than me, so I will listen to him." And so the students need to learn to say "I have told Mr. Petersen over and over he is saying something silly, but I know Mr. Petersen is wicked smart and knows everything, so I'm just going to agree with him, and figure out why later." But being told to do that sounds an awful like being told "Shut up, I'm big, you're little, I'm smart, you're dumb."

Finally, there was an incident regarding several thesis grades that left a sour taste in the mouths of several of my class mates. I don't mean to take sides (I was oblivious to the whole thing), but it is absolutely impossible to rationally answer someone who is frustrated, and eventually you must say "no, I'm right, and even if I'm not, I'm the authority, and I am right now."

Lincoln Davis said...

Matt,

I agree with you that the school has to have disciplinary authority even when it encourages students to think for themselves; I don't have much objection to Logos stopping us from talking in class, or even that much objection to a dress code. And you're right to note that there were a good number of teachers who would encourage students to think differently, even when our different thinking was retarded - that's why I always valued Mr. Nance, Mrs. Marston, and Mr. Harken. But there were other teachers with whom it always seemed to come down to "now you profess to be a Christian, don't you?" and the mere pulling of rank to win an argument. That I could do without.

Evan G. said...

I hold the same view as davis here. In short, there are faults on the teachers side and students side.

RespectMyAuthorita said...

Students and teachers are fairly stupid. Unless a teacher is a teacher at a major university for law,engineering,sceinces, etc..,,they are usually fairly stupid. To become a highschool teacher, you really dont end up knowing a whole lot more than your students. You just study the same materials you will be teaching them in broad depth. Highschool teachers dont require much in depth education. So when many children with high IQ's enter highschool and are able to pick up the material quickly, they often (factually) are smarter than the teacher, and by college will surpass the intellect level of a highschool teacher. Being as it is, the highschool teachers need to realize that other than a hit to their pride, they shouldnt be wounded that a highschooler corrected them or is as smart as them, because both of their educations are nearly at the same level. If a highschool teacher is gonna teach history, all she has to have is a history degree, which means, he or she went a little more in depth into all of history than a highschooler. but the college education was broad because in 4 years they covered all of mankinds history. whereas all a highschooler is focusing on in class is american history, and they can easily know more than the teacher by reading 1 single book about american history. Bottom line, teachers unless they have a massive degree or doctorate shouldnt think they are that much smarter than the students, and be ready for correction. Besides, even if you are smart, really smart, everyone makes mistakes. Nance was the man, he was welcoming corrections, he wanted the information to be 100% correct, by any means.

Matthew N. Petersen said...

Davis,

You're probably right. A lot for my post is that I was afraid Gunn thought "wow...Mr. Petersen's on board with this one." Which, being as I'm a Montrose teacher, would be really bad. And it was Mr. Harking that I was thinking of who you made for of on a test and got commended.

Matt

Evan G. said...

Mr. Nance and friends came to our house today and they were christmas caroling.