What Happens in Class, Doesn’t Stay in Class VI

  • Me: “They look confused.”
    • F: “Oh, don’t worry, they always look like that.”
  • I told a class of secondes to write New Year’s resolutions, and I got responses like, “I wouldn’t don’t eat candy,” “I would (que) my bedroom is clean,” “Reading very much,” “Help peoples,” and “Hit Clément. Ha Ha Ha!”
  • Some students didn’t understand my answer to a question, so I reformulated, and one kid gave voice to an enlightened “Ah!” three times in a row.
  • I never thought “oui” could sound so delighted until S asked a student if she wanted to draw my mystery story on the board for the rest of the class.
  • I’m beyond disappointed that I didn’t get to witness this, but F told me that she asked a class for a synonym of “good” and one kid replied, “f****** good.” (The asterisks are a direct quote from her email.)
  • Ak left me in the corner like a statue while she went over a worksheet with her unruly students, which dissolved into me turning all the Calvin and Hobbes frames on the worksheet into a thirty-minute shading exercise. Honestly, I should’ve just played the grief card and skipped her class to work on my feminism presentation. Priorities.
  • Jt’s class stared at me in confusion when I explained that the debate around illegal immigration is ironic and senseless, so I had to draw out the European-Native American genocide by drawing massive Xs over Native American stick figures.
    • They played “Guess the country” with me, and I disappointed them when I didn’t know France won the FIFA World Cup in 1998.
  • F said that her most fluent students really enjoy using French words in English, and one kid piped up, “Yes, it’s a cliché.” I gave my “History of Feminism in the US” presentation to them, and several students knew the term “glass ceiling.” These kids are more woke that I was at their age. They’re the generation that will save us all. (They’re also studying Shakespeare. Hell, English is my native language and I could barely understand Hamlet in AP Lit.)
  • There’s nothing like pretending that I don’t understand French when kids start whispering, “Tell her she’s pretty” or “Why does she have an accent?” (Practically all the teachers here have British accents.)
  • An entire group of terminales told me that I should never come back to Laon. It’s kind of sad how much the lycéens hate it here.
  • A student raised his hand and asked, “Miss, were you in Dijon a few weeks ago?” Turns out he saw me on the street, but wasn’t sure it was me, so he didn’t say hi. It’s a good thing he didn’t, because considering I last saw him in November, I wouldn’t have recognized him.
  • Someone asked me what horseback riding was, so Jh asked the class what you do with horses, and one kid said, “Canoeing?”
  • Madeline made the most accurate observation when it comes to me teaching topics that aren’t related to social justice: “LMAO either way WHO CARES SARENA SURE AS HELL DOESN’T.”

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