Monday, September 04, 2006
THE BEST YEARS OF LIFE
Recycling is a positive endeavor, no one will deny that.
It’s in this spirit that I post today a previously written piece(ON 15/07/06).
(Oh come on it’s not like you never watch reruns!)
Ps. I expect more comments than when it was originally published!
Ps2.The meme is still active.
As a kid when complaining about homework, exams, mifranims and the like, invariably I’d get the overused reply that I should enjoy my school-going years.
“When your school career is over you’ll look back nostalgically and wish it had never ended”, they said philosophically.
When in an agreeable mood, I would just nod, when I had just failed math (again), I’d answer that nostalgia had to be better than what I was feeling (despair and exhaustion).
Aside from the fact that this gives a very gloomy picture of what is awaiting us later in life, after all they’re saying pretty much that it gets only worse; it is simply no comfort to an overstressed kid.
Teachers are often bitter and bored individuals, and frequently way too aged to relate to their students on any level.They hand off homework like school was a 24/24 activity, and not just from 9 am to 6 pm.
Every morning I see the kids carrying backpacks that would be large enough to carry them, if they had been horses (the backpacks).
Occasionally I feel so sorry for a small child that I offer to carry it for him/her as far as I’m going in the same direction.
More often than not I’m shocked by the weight of these things.
Admittedly I’m no Hulk, but still if something feels heavy to me, to a 12 year old it must feel like lead or the suitcases I’ll be schlepping soon(check second article of this blog).
And 20 days ago, at the end of last month, I went to visit my in-laws, parents and friends with teenagers, there I saw the revulsion and desperation of those youngsters at the sight of those obese study books.I tried to give them some encouraging remark, but three sleepless nights, spent studying, in a row would make anybody numb to gentle support or anything else.
At that moment I thought back to what my parents used to say to me and said loud enough for everyone to hear,” you were so wrong!”.
I may not walk to my daily job with the enthusiasm of a kid who just heard he’s going to Disneyland (or –world).However there are very few circumstances I can come up with in my darkest imaginations that would make me yearn for those so-called good old days.
Yet sometimes I wish I had appreciated the innocence of my school stage but given the choice I wouldnt go back!!
Notahottie-I can't imagine this being recommended by children's Doctors either.
So what were you doing in School?
David-We had something in common apparently I had some good times too, but not enough.
"They’re saying pretty much that it gets only worse" LOL, good point.
School wasn’t really that bad now that I look back at it, I never really had much homework, the problem for me was that my dad was and still is one of the teachers in school... thank G-d my mom was understood us kids ( I don’t think she like school much when she was a girl) and let us stay home, even when she knew we were faking the headaches.
(maybe ill read this again later and comment err more maturely?)
as for wanting to go back, nah, not a chance. Except for getting to hug my dad again. :)
Chasidishe-Faking headaches, what a classic.
I think your mother is a very wise person; By knowing that occasionally they can stay away from, the whole school year appear more bearable to the kids.
These recycled post were read by almost no one and as school just started again it seemed timely to post that one again.
It gets worse, only in a better way:)
Mia) it’s quite different when it’s a subject you choose and have a passion for.
University certainly has a few things in common with school, but so much more autonomy!
The Sabra-he he, seems like you agree with me:)
Amishav-I’m sure you’re a popular teacher, as even if you’re ordered to do some stuff, the way you deliver to the class is still in the teachers’ hand.
Social-Yeah, I had some unpleasant moments too, and it seems Sabra even more.
Emah-It can’t be good and I don’t understand how come no one says anything about it. Besides the concern for the future it’s hugely inconvenient for those tiny kids to carry these bags.
hey! i beg to differ. i taught high school english when in my early twenties for about 6 years, until i had my first kid. (right now, i'm still off.) kids used to beg their guidance counselors to get into my class and parents used to complain to the assistant principal of english when they couldn't get their kids into my class. i expected a lot from my students and they gave a lot, and they had an amazing time in my class. during my prep time, they would line up outside the teachers' lounge because they wanted time to talk, ask extra questions or whatever. and no, they weren't all honors kids, many of them had barely cracked open a book before coming to my class. there are still former students of mine with whom i'm still in touch on a regular basis.
i'd like to think, just as was my experience with school, that it is a time to be enjoyed because it's true, only in your years of schooling are you free to express yourself, ask questions, and really think without the hinderances and responsibilities of daily adult life. for me, the best time of my life was college, not because of the freedom or anything, but because i was encouraged to really think and examine and philosophize. no other time in your life do you have the opportunity to do this so easily and so often. it's the primary grades that give us the tools we need to do this.
i'm not trying to say that our post-schooling days are unfulfilling, just that very few of us are in careers where we have as many opportunities to think as freely as we did during our school years.
Sometimes, when I see those children carrying such heavy backpacks, I wonder if they are good for their bodies, or if somehow, these will leave the person with poor posture. Are the weight of the books to be correlated, if at all, with what is to be learned inside of them?
That being said, I can honestly say, and my own children fought with me on this one,I used to suggest a luggage cart. My reasoning was,would you rather have physical problems or look like a nerd?
Now, in my profession, I have ditched the beautiful leather briefcase, for one of those roller carts from Staples (they cost $20.00 and you could put your life inside of them.) Easy to use, on the body, not expensive, and definitely worth its weight in gold.
Bec-You were obviously a very good and interesting teacher, I've met some like that but few.
I agree with you thoughts about college and indeed there is a certain feeling to talk philosophy a lot.
However I was really limiting myself to high school and lower.
I think that age plays an important role, young teachers connect better, understand their class better than an older one, albeit with more experience, could.
Barbara-You knew I was gonna love that comment!
Pragmatic thinking firts! Who cares how you look, if it's easier and better than that's the way to go!
You're right, there's way too much stress involved with learning!
lemme list you off the PLEASANT moments..dont sneeze you might miss em..
For a moment I thought that perhaps only in my town was such an offense tolerated.
Kasamba-It’s just too much.
Sabra-in a future post you must explain what happened?
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