Friday, May 7, 2010

what did you learn today?

When I was young as I arrived home from school, my daddy would say, "So, Chellee, what did you learn in school today?" I would inevitably respond with, "Aw, nothin'," To which he would say, "You might have just as well stayed home and helped yer mother then." This little scenario played out over and over throughout my youth. Even when I did learn something, I certainly didn't admit to it. That would have ruined our little after school game.

Well, my first semester back in college is over, and it was a dooze. My daddy isn't around anymore to actually ask me what I learned in school. How fiercely I miss him--his nearly completely bald head, his hilarious and completely ridiculous bedtime stories that sometimes included toilet paper wrapped around his head, and his big, warm daddy bear hugs that nearly squeezed the life out of me. Even though he isn't here to ask, I thought I'd tell you anyway. Here is what I learned in school:

1. College professors teach that you should teach what you intend for your students to learn, and test them accordingly. Then they put trick questions in their finals, and when you call them on it: "This is a trick question on the English language. I know the material, but the question is a trick. Which way am I supposed to answer it?" They look at you and smirk. Therefore, it isn't actually necessary to teach as you preach.

2. If I do my homework ahead of time and hand it in, I will be punished by being given extra homework to do, and this right at the end of the semester as finals approach. Therefore, drag your feet on all your assignments.

3. Math is more confusing than I ever knew. In base six, 5 + 5 = 14. In base eight, 5 + 5 = 12. In base nine, 5 + 5 = 11, and in base two, 5 + 5 = 1010. I expect this to come in handy every day the rest of my life.

4. If you live in the U.S. and you are white, you are bad simply by virtue of the color of your skin. This was drilled into my head quite laboriously. Therefore, I am very, very bad because I am very, very pale skinned.

5. I learned to make the flower that is pictured above in a presentation that a group of students did. It's rather lovely, isn't it? Possibly the best thing I learned all semester.

So, Daddy, nothing much has changed. I really should have stayed home and helped my mother.

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