Well, THAT Was Quite a Learning Experience!

ch-unfair.gifI met with Joe this morning about my two ‘favorite’ students. I have to say that I’m a little disappointed with the outcome of that meeting.

While I understand that there’s really not much that Joe CAN do at this point, I had kind of hoped for more than a “note in their academic files.” While my boss noted that we can’t take these miscreants out back and beat them (as much, he said, as he might like to), he has promised me that he and the head chef will meet individually with Dave and Tad and press upon them that their behavior this term has been entirely unacceptable.

Joe had both of these students before – in the public speaking class they failed before coming to my class last term – and understands exactly what I’m dealing with here. He assured me that none of this is going to come back at me in any negative way (as far as the college is concerned; he couldn’t promise that the boys won’t utter vile things at me under their breath as we pass in the hallway). He told me that, despite my feeling like a tattle-tale, I’ve done everything exactly right. “Keep all your emails from this class,” Joe said, “just in case there’s fallout from either of the boys or their parents.” Joe, however, is completely satisfied with the job that I’ve done thus far. Really, his opinion is the only one that concerns me at the moment; I couldn’t care less what either of these boys – or their parents – thinks of me.

I haven’t yet received an email from either Joe or JG, the head chef, about the Bozo Twins. When I do, rest assured that I will fill you in.

My ONLY regret in all of this is that I didn’t make photocopies of their completely inappropriate writing journal entries (where they talk of their favorite pornography genres, relate tales of drug and alcohol abuse, and ponder the sexual orientation of one of their classmates). I’m chalking that up to my inexperience as a teacher and am tucking that little learning experience under my belt; the next Bozo won’t get off so easily.

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3 Comments

Filed under concerns, General Griping, Learning

3 responses to “Well, THAT Was Quite a Learning Experience!

  1. OK, it’s journal entries, it’s supposed to just get them writing, put the pen to the paper and write, right? If that’s the crap that’s going through their heads then aren’t they supposed to write it? I agree that they have behaved abominably, however, we have widely varying rules for what is appropriate for journalling sorts of stuff. I’d love to hear from other readers/teachers/students. I have worked extensively with college students creating dramatic work and sex, drugs and rock and roll are not only seen they are a staple in the first 2 years you know most students. Does it get boring sometimes? Is it lame sometimes? Sure, but since we’re asking them to tell us about themselves, to create art (or whatever) you have to write/paint/act what you know and if porn is what somebody knows, well, sadly you watch a shitload of porn-related work until they figure out enough to go further. You know? Is this not a generally agreed upon view? Am I even nuttier than I maintain?

  2. I would have been okay with that, Kizz, had I not put a SPECIFIC PROHIBITION on such topics before I assigned them the journal work. I told them that I wanted only “college appropriate” material – I even specifically forbade sex and drugs – but that didn’t stop them.

    What I was looking for was writing practice, yes; however, I’m not teaching in an art-oriented school. The point of the journal exercises was to get them in the habit of daily writing and to teach them to be observant of what’s happening around them. I am CERTAIN that there’s more going on in their lives than porn and drugs. I would have been much happier with a description of a cooking assignment they’d been given, or a rant about how much gasoline costs, or an observation about the general lack of entertainment available in our small town. What is particularly telling is that ALMOST ALL of the other students figured that out.

    The stated purpose of TCC is to teach our students life-lessons. The kinds of things some of the students wrote about would have been inappropriate in the workplace, and they were inappropriate in my classroom. The Bozo Twins wrote what they wrote to get a rise out of me. The next kids to pull that shit will not get away with it the way Tad and Dave did.

  3. Gotta second you on that one Mrs. Chili. I would even go so far as to say that ‘Learning How to Relate to People’ is also a life lesson and I’m sorry if it seems old fashioned, but you just don’t talk about sex and drugs with a professor (unless of course that happens to be the topic of the class), especially a woman professor! I was raised that there is a certain way a gentleman talks to a lady….again, call me old fashioned. *shrug* I would never dream of addressing ANY of professors, male or female, in such a disrespectful and ignorant manner!

    Even when I was in my Psych of Addiction, and later, Human Sexuality class, we were expected to handle ourselves as adults and discuss things in a way that reflected the fact that we are in college.

    I am not so conservative as to think that these things are not ever to be discussed in college. However I do have to believe that if those topics are something a student “MUST” write about then it should be done with quite a bit of decorum, something I highly doubt the Bozos know anything about.

    I feel your frustration on this one. I hope this situation gets resolved in a way that reflects what you are expecting of these students–maturity and respect.

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