Teaching at a new high school, Miss Eyre defied the zeitgeist and dared to teach a lesson in writing mechanics.
I photocopied handouts with rules. I circled mistakes on students’ papers. I made them write down proper usages of punctuation marks. I did all that and so much more.
And it felt GOOD.
She might photocopy workbook exercises and make her students do them.
I know. I’m a terrible teacher. I’m supposed to assume that my students will magically figure out the rules of the conventions of the English language simply by being wide-eyed ingenues before the great literature of the world and writing about their lives, this despite the fact that relatively few of them have learned any great life lessons at their tender ages.
. . . I have realized that teaching usage conventions the stupid way has produced, for me, fifteen-year-olds who can’t use commas properly and aren’t even sure what they are. So I’m going to teach them. Because that’s what I do. Ignorance is not bliss.
. . . Jeez, what will I do next? Make everyone in the class read the same story? Force kids not to copy research reports from Wikipedia? STOP ME BEFORE I TEACH AGAIN!
In an earlier post, she tries to persuade a dozing student that he won’t be able to go to college or get a good job if he never does any work in school.
You only have to graduate from high school to become a garbage man,” commented Hector, who sits behind Ross. “That’s what I’m going to do.”
What if the city isn’t able to hire as many trash collectors in the future?
“I’ll just live with my mom,” Hector said.“Me too,” Ross added.