I almost titled this post “That favorite question,” but I was afraid the sarcasm might be lost in the translation, so to speak. I loved teaching but there was one question that got my hackles up, rubbed me the wrong way, set my teeth on edge, and fried my banana peel. I bet it is familiar to every school teacher out there.
Here it is:
“Hey, Miss, what are we doing today?”
Or its famous cousin:
“Are we doing anything today?”
Here are some of my gut reactions to that most irritating of questions. Why so irritating, you may ask. I’ll address that in a second. My reactions that I kept to myself:
- “Nothing. I just spent all those hours preparing for us to do nothing today.”
- “No, we’re not doing anything today. Why would you think we would?”
- “Uh, biology?”
- “Why, calculus, of course.” (It was a biology class.)
- “Whatever you want to do, of course.”
My list of possible sarcastic responses could go on and on, but I tried to be as professional as possible and to remember that the bodies walking through my door were not mature adults yet.
It didn’t matter that I had posted the daily agenda on the wall, in a Powerpoint on the Promethean board, AND the students were supposed to have written the week’s lessons on a calendar in their notebooks. Not to mention of course, that I had given them a preview of coming attractions at the close of the last class period!
Oh well, no one ever said that teaching was easy. Well, I take that back. LOTS of people say teaching is easy because teachers only work seven hours a day and get three months “off” in the summer. Wish that were true!
And my answer to my favorite question? “Come on in and you’ll find out!”