Randomly Amusing

I’ve been away for so long that it almost feels like I’m blogging for the first time.

As usual, work’s been eating up most of my time and even if I want to blog during the weekends, I can’t seem to find the inspiration to do so. Although, there’s been no lack of ideas!

Work’s been going fine. Yes, it’s still tiring and leaves me with less time for myself and a sore throat. But there are certain moments of clarity that make me realize how much I love [the major aspects of] what I’m doing.

Anyway, this is going to be a random blah-blah post, about nothing in particular.

On Thursday, I had my first Parent-Teacher meeting. As a teacher. Right when I stepped into school, all tensed about meeting the parents, I saw one of my favourite teachers. It felt great seeing her after so long. She was surprised to know I was working as a teacher.  So, the evening started off on a good note. The meeting went well. I was, literally, gushing about most of the students, trying not to blurt out anything stupid that would belie my serious demeanour. Well, I admit I did have some moments of silly comments. But, on the whole, it went far better than I expected (and feared).

Talking about students, there were a few interesting, amusing comments I heard in class, which I wanted to blog about.

* As part of the special programmes put up for the school’s 27th birthday, there was a skit by some senior students, focussing on the rape-issues happening in India. That day, while having a random conversation in Class 3, I asked them if they understood what the ‘moral’ behind the skit was. A lot of them raised hands, volunteering to answer. Some responses I got were:

“Save the Earth!” (We had an Earth Day celebration two weeks prior to it; so maybe the kid connected both, hence the response)

“We should all be friends, not enemies” (Close enough, in a way)

“Save the girls!” (The kid had no response when I asked “From what should the girls be saved?”)

I just smiled at their reactions. How do you make a 8-year-old understand the concept of rape and the need to stop it from happening? Perhaps, it’s better to keep their innocent minds untainted by the malice of the world. Atleast for now.

Another interesting incident was –

In a particular activity, the students had to rearrange some jumbled letters to form words and then fill up sentences using these words. One sentence was: ‘This is the ________ where Krishna lived. (Hint – a p l c e) [Answer is, obvioulsy, place]

A kid came to me, saying he didn’t know the answer. I told him it’s easy, to try once more and read the sentence out loud. His reply: “Ma’am, I’m Christian (Krishna being a Hindu god).” I smiled at his innocent comment. I explained that religion was not the context and told him how to do it. But I couldn’t forget his reply. It still makes me smile. It will take some time for them to realize it’s wrong to consider religion as a basis of difference.

So, with memories of such seemingly-small incidents, I go on from one day to the next. Let’s hope it won’t take very long for me to come up with the next post.

Of Writer’s Block & Joys of Teaching

This is what I wrote in a mail to a friend: “I want to blog so badly. It’s like there’s so much in my head that I want to blog about but for some reason, I don’t feel that urge to write…or even when I try to write it out, I don’t feel satisfied. Like, I was typing out something right now. But I feel like it’s a half-hearted attempt… I don’t feel anything driving me on from one sentence to the next…after every sentence, I come up against a dead-end and I kinda push myself.  At the end of a paragraph, when I read what I just wrote, I feel like it’s not me, not true, not complete. Like I haven’t put myself into it, which is true, of course. ”

Maybe this is a kind of writer’s block, wanting to write but unable to do it. When I read some blog posts, I get reminded of how much I have to write about and how I keep pushing it aside for later. So, right now, I thought I’d just write out something to pacify the guilty voice plaguing me.

So, I joined as a teacher in my school…completed over a week. And, yes, I’m happy. I’m still not very used to the whole system and I keep talking to some colleagues to get a better idea of what I’m supposed to do. The tasks that come along with teaching and being part of a school system aren’t very appealing. But I love the experience of teaching. I love the rush of emotions when I’m able to successfully put across a topic. I absolutely adore my students. Yes, there are a few who get on my nerves and are difficult to handle. But that doesn’t make them less loved. I enjoy getting to know them, bit by bit, each day.

At the end of the day, I come home tired and drained, usually with a sore throat and a headache. But ask me how my day was and I’ll always tell you it was good. Because when I look back at what I did in those classes, I feel a sense of happiness I can’t explain. It was fun, yes. But more than that, it meant something to me…standing there and teaching them, even if all that they grasped from it was a single word. I feel so lazy when I think about the next day. But once I’m there, I have to admit I’m happy in a way I can’t explain.

So, that’s what has been happening with me. Enjoying the new experience while trying to learn the ropes of the system. And trying to overcome this writer’s block. Or whatever it might be.

 

 

A Not-so-Equal & Opposite Reaction – Part 2: A Letter to the Person who was Taught by “People who Didn’t Want to do Anything”

Readers, in case you don’t enjoy this as much as the other posts, I apologize. This is exactly what I wanted to tell the concerned person. I couldn’t have said it any different if I truly wanted to empty my mind.

 

Dear Person,

Well, I might not have enjoyed the time I worked at your company but I did find you a wonderful boss to work with. It’s a pity you had to ruin it all right now, right when I was about to leave with a good picture of you. Of course, I’m sure my dislike won’t affect you or your business. I’m just telling you what I have in mind, what I want to tell you.. The effect it may or may not have is irrelevant to me.

Getting to the point, so you tell me, “People who don’t want to do anything, teach.” And you couldn’t really give an explanation for that. Were you just trying to discourage me and make me see how I should be in your company if “I want to do something?” Or were you genuinely voicing your thoughts? Either way, I’m sorry to tell you, it was very stupid of you to say something like that, especially being someone so intelligent  and understanding. I’ve lost all the admiration and respect I had for you, which probably won’t matter to you.

Anyway, I’ve noticed that you speak very good English. I suppose some poor soul who didn’t want to do anything must have taught you the ABCDs…and then, grammar and how to string words into sentences correctly & coherently. Oh, and surely, there must have been so many other people in your life who didn’t want to do anything…People who wanted to do nothing but the worthless job of teaching you subjects like Maths, Science, History and many more. And, yeah, none of that is probably of use to you right now. I mean, who cares how to multiply when you have accountants to do it for you; why would you care to know if the Earth is round or if it revolves around the Sun; why bother knowing what/who made your country what it is now… Why would you care about the lot of other stuff that these people taught you?

I think I totally see your point. Who would take up a job like teaching except people who don’t want to do anything? Who else would be jobless enough to sit and teach kids just so they can be something in life, like you became?

Oh, and your children are probably being taught by a bunch of people who don’t want to do anything. Don’t you think that would be horrible – being taught by people who are aimless, who find joy in doing something so worthless? I’m sure your children probably want to be something in life…and they should definitely be taught by someone like you, who is something. But then, how could you teach? You aren’t one of those people who don’t want to do anything. Ah, well, who needs teaching anyway, right? Your children probably won’t.

I could go on like this, trying to (sarcastically) put across how some teacher(s) must have contributed to what you are today…how you could have ended up being nothing, how your children are also dependent on a bunch of teachers to become something in life. Someday, you’re going to realize it and I hope time helps you to correct your thought. Not just because I’m going to be one of those people, but because when you say something like that, you are insulting and degrading the teachers who took the effort to teach you just so that you could be something in life while they remain the same. And yes, you’re insulting yourself. Teachers might seem weird (who else would spend their lives helping others to be successful and stay in the same position themselves). But that definitely does not make them people who don’t want to do anything.

Best of luck for the life ahead. Hope it brings you more success and better realizations.

 

Yours sincerely,

Ex-employee.