Monday, October 10, 2011

Straight From the Mouths of Babes

Good teaching is one-fourth preparation and three-fourths theater.  
~Gail Godwin

A teaching degree should really require some theater classes. (Or perhaps I should start my own class entitled Teaching as Theater.) Luckily for my students, I love drama as much as Lindsay Lohan loves being on house arrest. Take this script (an excerpt from my actual classroom this week) as proof. 

Scene: Tuesday afternoon, Ms. G's classroom. Just by the very act of existing (much less trying to teach him something), Ms. G is annoying her student T. Every (simple) request is met with an "Oh my GAWD!" or "Ms. G, you 'bout to work me to DEATH!", followed by a dramatic sigh,  throwing down of a pencil, etc. Since it is just Ms. G and two students in her classroom, she decides to give them a taste of their own medicine. 

Ms. G: Let's play a little game. It's called Who Am I? I'll act something out and you guess who I am. 

Ms. G proceeds to take T.'s baseball cap off his desk and buckle it around her belt buckle like all the 7th grade guys do. She then pushes in her chair while sighing dramatically and rolling her eyes. 

Ms. G (as T.) :  DAAAAAAAAANG Ms. G! You's about to work me to DEATH! I'm 'bout to get on up outta here. (Sucks teeth.) DAAAAAAAANG. Why I gotta do all this work anyways? Can I go home? I wanna go home. DAAAAAAAANG. (Walks across the room, using the trash can like a basketball hoop to throw away the worksheet that was in her hand.) Yo, J.! Did you see that? DAAAAANG Ms. G! You be gettin' on my nerves real bad. DAAAANG.

At this point, Ms. G pauses, and turns around. 

The two boys stare at her silently, eyes wide. They slowly raise their hands from where they are frozen on their desks, and begin to applaud. 

Ms. G: (taking a bow) Thank you, thank you very much. 

(Yes, I really did this, and yes, they applauded. Since then, the teeth-sucking and DAAAAAANG-shouting have been drastically reduced. Wouldn't YOU take me Teaching as Theater class? )


Shae Majors said...

I would 100% take this class!

As a current nursing student, my professors always say that 90% of our duties (as a nurse) revolve around teaching - teaching the client, the family, the community, etc.!

They often reference teaching as the closest profession to nursing and this always makes me smile! (And, of course, think of you!)

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