As a teacher, what is the weirdest thing you have seen in your school or classroom?

By: | Post date: July 4, 2017 | Comments: No Comments
Posted in categories: Personal

Back when I was lecturing, I made a consistent effort to be the weirdest thing in the room. If I was running late, I would boom the opening words of my lecture while walking down the corridor into the theatre. I would walk into lecture drinking a Slurpee, and remind students that no eating or drinking was allowed in the theatre. I would reuse my Introduction To Linguistics slides from the previous year, and point out that the essential nature of human language had not altered significantly in the past 12 months. I would intersperse my lecture with random dated pop culture references from the 90s and dad jokes. I opened my first lecture on historical linguistics in Old English. I paced the room, gesticulating and expostulating.

Of course you are not surprised to read this.

I was something of an acquired taste, but I had a mature age student point out to me that during my lectures, you could hear a pin drop.

As a result, and being transfixed by my own antics, I didn’t notice any weird happenings among the students. I had colleagues that did. One colleague noted the incongruity between the couple taking notes above the desk, and what their hands were doing to each other below the desk.

Alas, I was absent the day my peers brought a stripper to scare off the curmudgeonly lecturer during his final Fortran lecture. (It didn’t work. “You are not a student enrolled in this course! Please leave!”) I was there, however, when a group of students performed the Dutch national anthem for our Dutch computer architecture lecture, and the Danish national anthem for our Danish operating systems lecturer.

I was in fact the soloist.

Wilhelmus van Nassouwe ben ik, van Duitsen bloed….

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