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Date Posted: 08:42:32 03/10/05 Thu
Author: Joe
Subject: Subject changed
In reply to: Caitlin 's message, "Relating to "sinners" in the real world" on 20:48:05 03/09/05 Wed

(This may have been more appropriate in the off-topic board.)

I think the best grade- and middle-school teachers are considered those who were "scary" (meaning strict) but who also made you work hard and taught you a lot. You know, those teachers whom you thank at the end of the school year and send thank-you letters to 10 years later because you appreciate what a great job they did. The best common example I can think of right now is "Mr. Ratburn" in the PBS series, "Arthur."

I remember some of the "scary" but good teachers I had in grade school (Chicago public school system, late 70s - early 80s). They put up with no misbehavior in class and dealt with it quickly and sternly so they could get back to making you work hard and learning. But you knew that their first priority was to teach you something and that behind the stern exterior was a caring heart, which showed itself if you ever met them outside of school.

I also remember some plain "scary" teachers whose priority was seemingly only to "keep order" in the class. In their classes, it was common to experience humiliation and punishments that did not "fit the crime." And the class ended up spending a lot of time with heads on desks instead of learning.

From what I've read, teaching grade school and middle school these days in many districts is incredibly difficult, and I hardly feel qualified to be giving advise. You are better off talking to your experienced peers, preferably those who are considered to be the kind of teachers who are "scary" but also good.

On a more on-topic note, I graduated from the 8th grade in 1982, but up to the time I left UBF in 2001 I experienced the common UBF abuse of being treated like I was in grade school.

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