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- Put like a little, this is bad,
I shouldn't be telling you guys this (beep).
(playful music)
- Hi, I'm Dan, I was an adjunct professor
in film and art at a liberal arts college.
- Hi, my name is Tselane Thomas,
and I was a science teacher for first through fifth grade.
- My name's Jenny.
I have been teaching for almost 10 years now.
All in preschool.
- Today I'm gonna be sharing
some insider knowledge about schooling.
- Oh. (laughs)
What kind of gossip in the teacher's lounge?
Oh, we talk about everything.
I don't wanna get myself in trouble here.
(laughs)
- It's nothing that I think a student
would find terribly interesting.
It's all about like unionization.
- When we're taking vacations,
if we're even gonna be able to afford a vacation.
- Talking (beep) about the administration a little bit.
- Mainly I think we just talk about who's bugging who.
Talk about our coworkers, I guess.
- We do talk about you, for sure.
- Most of the time we talk about our experiences.
If we deal with really bad or misbehaved children.
- 'Cause if you're a problem to one teacher,
we wanna know if you're a problem
to every teacher, or if you just hate us.
- Or if we had issues with the parents,
which happens quite often.
Parents will come in and yell at us
for their child not doing well and blame it on the teacher,
so we tend to gossip about that.
Biggest pet peeve I would say
is students coming to my classroom at lunchtime.
- I mean, just like blatant lying.
- With the little ones, it's probably when
they just tap you constantly
when they're trying to get your attention.
Like, hi, hi, hi.
- I just need my time to myself.
That's really, really difficult,
'cause you wanna be nice, you wanna answer questions,
but we need a little break, too.
- Plagiarism is a huge pet peeve,
because it's incredibly easy to catch, yet it is so rampant.
- Another annoying thing that students do
is when they think they know the answer to something
and I'll try to explain something in science,
they'll, I know already, I know already.
And I can't even explain it to the other kids,
I'm like, that's nice, I'm glad you know,
but they don't know, so shh, you know.
- I think a lot of students are just trying their best.
They're trying their best in a system
that is in many ways stacked against them.
So I'm pretty forgiving
when it comes to the little annoyances.
Have I ever had a student come in
visibly or otherwise intoxicated?
I'm sure.
I mean, depending on a good attendance day,
there are 110 students in this class,
it was an auditorium class.
So the odds are that a few of them
are intoxicated is pretty high.
- No, 'cause preschoolers are too young for that,
but we have had kids come in who are like,
clearly on medicine.
Like, they're sick and their parents
send them knocked up on DayQuil.
- I have never had any students come in intoxicated.
I would be shocked if they did.
I think maybe they were intoxicated
on their prescription medications?
But not anything outside of that.
- I also understand that the world's falling apart,
and you need to cope with that feeling of hopelessness
that I think a lot of us are feeling in varying degrees.
So I'm not gonna begrudge a student
for coming in drunk or high to a class
as long as they aren't disruptive
and they aren't stopping other people from enjoying
or at least listening to what I have to say.
- How aware am I of their personal lives?
They tell you everything.
- As far as like, the relationship-y kind of stuff, yeah.
With college classes, you typically
take breaks in the middle, 'cause you teach like,
three to four hour classes.
And in those 30 minutes, you hear some stuff.
- They tell you about baby sisters, baby brothers.
They'll tell you if their mom is pregnant
before mom tells you.
You'll hear, oh, my mommy has a baby in her belly.
- I am super aware of my student's gossip
and personal lives because they are loud, okay?
They talk about everything all the time
with no awareness of anybody around them,
so I hear everything, and I have dog ears,
so I hear stuff that I do not wanna hear.
- They talk about parties.
They talk about getting drunk, getting high.
- I've overhead a girl accidentally pee on herself.
They forgot to wear deodorant.
All kinds of fun stuff.
The worst way of cheating would be
trying to signal to their friend
across the room, like, what's number five?
'Cause I can clearly see it.
It's terrible, you're not gonna get away with it.
Just study.
- There's no cheating in preschool,
but preschoolers are sneaky.
You might say something's not open for them
or something's closed, and they'll turn around
and go to another teacher and say,
oh, can I have some more watermelon?
Or can I have some more quesadilla?
And then when they say yes, you turn around,
you're like, I just told them no.
- Everything I did was essay based.
I can hear the groans on the other side of the screen.
The worst thing I've seen is I taught a class of six people.
So six essays.
That's not a lot of essays.
Two of the essays invariably were almost identical
every single time, and I'm like, your pool is so small.
There's such a degree of like,
intellectual inbreeding happening right here
that of course I'm gonna catch them.
And of course I'm gonna tell them that I caught them.
And you're almost disappointed in the lack of creativity.
And it's also kind of insulting to you personally.
You're just like, you didn't think I would notice?
I don't know what kind of apathy
you're dealing with outside of this classroom,
but I really care, I care too much to a lot of degrees.
- I would say a good way of cheating would probably be,
this is bad, I shouldn't be telling you guys this (beep).
(laughs)
So take a paper, put it on your chair and close your legs
so that when you come, you know,
you could look down at it and then close your legs.
And then I probably won't notice that.
I love the joy that I get from seeing kids
absorb information and that I can make science cool.
Being a woman of color, it's super, super important
to show that being represented is important.
- Being a teacher in preschool
is almost like being a movie star.
You walk into a room, and they are thrilled to see you.
They run to you, they hug you, they kiss you.
It's just, they're very excited to see you.
And that is the biggest joy in preschool.
- I mean, it's kind of cliche to say,
but when you see that a-ha look in the students' eyes.
Like, being able to distill an abstract concept
into just a couple sentences and have them
understand it for the first time is euphoric.
It's what we want.
It's what we live for, to a degree.
It makes me miss teaching more and more every day.
- School is everything for now, but it's gonna change.
Just focus on loving yourself, do your homework,
listen to your parents, and then when you get older,
you'll have to start over again.
(pleasant music)
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Teachers Reveal Secrets About Teaching

356 Folder Collection
Estelle published on September 24, 2019
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