Saturday, March 18, 2006

Snippets From A Teacher’s Diary.

Why I Love Parent-Teacher Meets.

The parent teacher meet today heralded the completion of one session. Most of my students (I prefer to call them my kids) have done very well and have been promoted to the next higher class. Even I have been promoted. When I joined here four months back, I was the subject teacher teaching physics, chemistry, and math. I am the class teacher now. And this session onwards, I’d be taking more classes and teaching environmental sciences as well.

When my colleague asked me how has been my experience in a nutshell, I actually did not know what to say. I’ve had mixed feelings about the whole episode. I’ll tell you what does being a class teacher in my school mean. It means I’ll be responsible for some 40 kids, doing some extra donkey-work like taking the attendance everyday, adding up the figures at the end of the month and things like that. This is pretty menial work that requires no creativity or imagination. On top of that, I’ll be held responsible for whatever my kids do henceforth, be it my boys breaking the window panes while playing cricket or my girls proposing to the senior guys. Most kids find History boring (even I used to), so when they do not do the History homework, I’d be blamed. I’ll have to make sure that the desks and the chairs and the classroom remain shipshape and my kids do not whistle or do not throw a single paper rocket in school. If it’s any consolation for them, I already feel like a jailor in charge of innocent victims treated as convicts. You just can’t put a child with a football in a large room and expect him not to kick around. Kids are kids after all. They break windowpanes, whistle, come to school without studying, run around and dirty their shoes, and throw paper rockets at people walking on the roads. It’s wrong on my part to hush them up every time they open their mouth to say a seemingly silly joke. 

I have never enjoyed the parent teacher meets in the entire 14 years of my school life as much as I did today. It’s always different to be on the other side of the table and watch the parents and kids. I have also observed that while among Bengali families, only the moms turn up at the parent-teacher meetings, both parents show up for others.

After the meeting, we were sharing our day’s experiences over pizzas our principal treated us to. "How was your first meeting?", she asked me.

"Ma’am, I think the PT meets should be converted into fathers-teachers meets henceforth. Moms strictly not allowed"- I blurted out in front of more than a dozen teachers.

There was complete silence. Everyone was giving me a stunned look. No one reacted because they did not know how the other person would react. Finally, all of them including our dear principal burst out into relentless laughter. The typical side-aching, dentition-exhibiting, closing your eyes and contorting your face types.

What came next stunned me. Because when she asked me who I thought was the best looking dad, everyone screamed equivocally, almost at the same instant- Sakshi’s dad. And then, everyone gave each other surreptitious looks and guilty smiles and started the laughter round once again. 

At least we teachers agreed on one thing. All of us. Sakshi’s dad.



Shekhar said...

Hmm...Enakshi's dad certainly seems to be a lucky guy.

Awesome point about 'normal' kids doing normal things like playing, making noise and chucking paper planes, not to mention trying to figure out the greatest mystery of all time: girls.

Small school-time incident. Typical chaotic scene and the teacher walked into the classroom and shut everyone down. I went up to the teacher and asked her a question: Wouldn't you be scared if you ever had to teach in a school where children NEVER made any noise? My class teacher was stunned; after all, we were just in class 5.

I only hope you are never asked that question as a school-teacher by one of your kids.

Abhi said...

My heart goes out to kids jinki tu class teacher hogi miss 30/8 ! bhago baccho bhaago , dhakkan devi ab aapko aur bhi subjects padayegi .and sharam nai aati apne pappa ki umar ke enakshi's dad ke upar buri nazar daalte hue ? I wonder adam teasing abhi tak issue kyun nahi bana , with criminals like u around.congrats for the promotion ! :)

Nandya said...

ha ha ha....a good read......u girl got a certain knack update on ur US trip.....??....

Kwab said...

COngratttss!!! on u r promotion...u r writings r really frank.....

nv said...

Kinda new to your blog, didnt infact know you were a school teacher, a profession i have alot of respect for.....great insight into the parent teacher meet-world, something ive never had if only i had known this several years ago....


Jeevan Baretto said...

Have you had an experience of attending a DISCO?? I mean the Disciplinary committee meeting.

We recently had one here. I was not part of it though. But such meetings really scares me off. The parent-teachers meeting, would seem one battle ground.. where every parent would try to defend his son or daughter.

It's altogether a different story in ur case.
Well written post..

The Bhandari's said...

hehehehe....Enakshi's dad :)
well what does Enakshi mean
:D just for Curiosity....
good post


Sunshine, this is my letter to Enakshi's dad:-


Run! Run! Run! Enakshi's dad as all the lady teachers of your daughter's school are after you.

The situation can be so cruel that you might get a call from each and every lady teacher of
that school. They might go to the extent of giving your daughter general remark on your
daughter's calendar/diary.

So if there are 30 lady teachers and each one gives your daughter one general remark, then
you will have to pay visit to the teachers (one each day including Sunday's and Holidays)
and that would make you visit her school all the 30 days a month and so 365 days a year.

In the process you will be enjoying yourself all the 30 days and your poor daughter will be
suffering every day in a year and soon you will have to book three tickets for Agra.

Of all, your daughter might be harmed mostly by her class teacher. So BEWARE OF HER.

So if you want your daughter's good, you need to change her school soon.
Also you wife's nightmares would be healed faster.


A Well Wisher.

Very interesting post Sunshine. Its good to see so much humour in you. Really a unique way of
writing makes your blogs so much interesting to read. Keep up the good work.

anon_iitian said...

Well, who so ever is enakshi's dad must be a really smart chap.
But i would really wish to have a class teacher like you, and who wouldnt.
The problems in society like generation gap only start after we forget what we were, and what we are.
I hope time doesnt do the same act on you

Ankit said...

well nice post as always and congrats for getting Promoted.
Besides few exception( Anu ma'am) I hv very horrifying memories of my class teachers. I just wish you turn out to be a great one.

Dreamcatcher said...

Lol to munnu's comment.
You seem to be a pretty cool teacher and thankfully you have a brilliant sense of humor. My class teachers soon lost theirs :(
My cousin used to teach Montessori and a five year old proposed to his classmate and said he wanted to marry her :D
hope you dont face that.

Joe said...

nice post.


Vidya said...

A great read. Loved the way a boring event like a parents teachers meet can become something so interesting . U have an awesome writing style.Nothing to beat the inner mental workings of a single girl looking out for the right guy.
I do wish the student too should have got some of the attention(improvements i mean) Last but not the least i agree on the Bengali Moms part :)

anu said...

hehe...i know it happens when u get to see all same boring things everyday...n no eye pleasing 'nazare'...u no what my col is only for gals so at admission time wen ppl come to purchase d forms or get thr sis or daughter admitted..we get to see a few handsom chaps n dey too get chance to c the ocean of young butiful gals n we gossip all d things dat u were doing like..n its really fun..admin process is gonna hit soon..n we gonna enjoy it..btw as usual a nice post like u..

Rahul said...

I read your blog... and the one about American Dream seem so much me.. I like your frank way of expressing.... !

Babu Moshai said...

well done, u managed to provide a completely different perspective to such a mundane event as a parent's techer meet.
This post can all the mom's a heart attack ,If they come to know that the teachers are more interested in their husbands rather than the sons and daughters!!

ken said...

hey sunshine didn't read this post sorry for that 'twas too long ..... but wanted to complement on your excellent photographs down the page ...have saved some for my desktop !! hope no copyrt issues ;-) i promise not to make commercial use of these...

The.Grey.One said...

Too much madam :)

I hope Enakshi's dad comes across ur blog. Maybe it will be better if Enakshi's mom comes across it :D

You really have quite a way for expressing things. I admire ur posts ;)

- Murali

Scorpion King said...

Are you really trying to solve childrens problems in PT meet or just discuss other bull shit things with handsome dads ??

wht kind of teacher r u ? u like gossip with beautifull Fathers of children instead of fousing on real problem ? Disgusting ..

Thnxs God we never had such teachers !!

God save those children ..and future of india frm teachers like you ..

I'm fully aware of difficulties of Teachers life (My mom was HeadMistress for 30 yrs)

Also i have read u r blog on girls proposing to seniors , u r view is complete bullshit ..u r psycho ..

Imagine if instead of those girls if your own daughter would have done such things , and God forbid if some asshole would have taken undue advantage of u r daughter what would u have done ??

whatever u have written if its fiction than please pardon me ,my apologise ,
if its u r true views than God please throw some light on u r underdeveloped grey cell

Scorpion King

WithoutMe said...

Kind of reminded me of my skul days... used to be caught by my teachers too many times for blankly staring out of the window, & if somehow I got my eyes in the class, my mind used to be flying in places far off!!!

So, how dd yur students fare in papers u had set?