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Halfmadgenius
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04 Jun 2014, 1:46 am

So I was always in trouble as a kid. Often without knowing why I was in trouble, no one ever explained things to me, I was expected to just know. I had an epiphany the other day about one of the things that might have been ill perceived by teachers.

I have been accused once or twice of being a smart ass when I don't mean to be, but never thought much about it. I was also the kid who was generally five steps ahead I'm class. Always had what I thought were very good questions.

For example I can remember in elementary school the teacher, Ms. Nicely, telling us about the three states of matter; fluid, solid, and gas. The properties of each and that everything EVERY THING was in one of these three states.

I quickly started cataloging things, then ran in to a problem. As a mountain girl with a wood stove I saw fire everyday. It was a big part of every ones life in those parts. But it didn't act like gas, and it sure as hell wasn't a fluid. So I asked what state of matter fire was.

Luckily ms.Nicely was a good teacher who welcomed thoughtful questions. She admitted she wasn't sure. (It was years before I learned about the 4th state, plasma). But it occured to me another teacher might have thought I was being sassy. How many times was I in trouble for sassing when I had actual questions?



MakaylaTheAspie
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04 Jun 2014, 2:25 am

For that age, I'd call that a legitimate question. If you were trying to become some kind of physicist and were in college or something, it might be viewed as sassing (because you should apparently already know that and the teacher thinks you're trying to waste their time).

I guess it depends on the context of the question.


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MissDorkness
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04 Jun 2014, 9:46 am

Halfmadgenius wrote:
So I was always in trouble as a kid. Often without knowing why I was in trouble, no one ever explained things to me, I was expected to just know. I had an epiphany the other day about one of the things that might have been ill perceived by teachers.

I have been accused once or twice of being a smart ass when I don't mean to be, but never thought much about it. I was also the kid who was generally five steps ahead I'm class. Always had what I thought were very good questions.

For example I can remember in elementary school the teacher, Ms. Nicely, telling us about the three states of matter; fluid, solid, and gas. The properties of each and that everything EVERY THING was in one of these three states.

I quickly started cataloging things, then ran in to a problem. As a mountain girl with a wood stove I saw fire everyday. It was a big part of every ones life in those parts. But it didn't act like gas, and it sure as hell wasn't a fluid. So I asked what state of matter fire was.

Luckily ms.Nicely was a good teacher who welcomed thoughtful questions. She admitted she wasn't sure. (It was years before I learned about the 4th state, plasma). But it occured to me another teacher might have thought I was being sassy. How many times was I in trouble for sassing when I had actual questions?


Same here... I've had those experiences so many times over the years.
Great teachers will welcome critical thinking, others though? a challenge of authority or sassing. Yeah, I learned to keep my mouth shut eventually and most teachers in my later years would just think of me as quiet and someone who never asked questions. It wasn't worth the backlash.

I'd say college was similar, but, by that point, I was paying for it, so I'll darned well ask what I want and if the professor doesn't like it? tough, I was there to learn, not win a popularity contest.



Eccles_the_Mighty
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04 Jun 2014, 4:23 pm

In High School Physics we were learning about optical filters, this was after we had done stuff like the law of conservation of energy. So, Mr Harcourt shows us how white light shines into the red filter and only red light comes out. I asked him where the orange, yellow, green, blue and violet light went and he didn't know.

The correct answer of course is that the energy is absorbed by the filter which then heats up by a very small amount.

Sometimes teachers are not as smart as they make out.


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rapidroy
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05 Jun 2014, 12:04 am

Eccles_the_Mighty wrote:

Sometimes teachers are not as smart as they make out.

I think many and perhaps most of the teachers are only one page of the textbook ahead of the class and people like us often already know most of the book or are simply more curious. At its minimal the requirements a teacher are the ability to read a page, understand it to a reasonable degree and repeat it to a class of people in a understandable way. I recall many times I was able to correct a teacher or give too much information, The concept of a class full of people getting the wrong information is too much to deal with.

I recall my auto teacher pondering how fast a steam car could travel trying to perhaps start a discussion and perhaps inspire the kids to do a little research? No need I knew the speed, driver, car, date and location as well as some other interesting facts. The teacher did not look too impressed unfortunately, I never figured out why. I suppose the little professor personality gets annoying when professor is no longer little?



Prof_Pretorius
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05 Jun 2014, 1:22 pm

I had the gall to correct a Uni professor who said that once a creature was found in the fossil record, it was never seen alive afterwards. I pointed out the Coelacanth, and he was very un-impressed.


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Eccles_the_Mighty
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05 Jun 2014, 4:11 pm

University Professor: There are ninety five ways to make love to a woman.

University Student: Ninety six!

University Professor: Quiet at the back please, there are ninety five ways to make love to a........

University Student: Ninety six!

University Professor: Any more interruptions and I shall end this lecture, to continue, there are ninety five ways of making love to a woman.

University Student: Ninety seven!


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naturalplastic
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05 Jun 2014, 7:16 pm

Mrs So-and-so who I had for English in highschool, but who also taught history was a teacher I never had the nerve to correct.

She told u



naturalplastic
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05 Jun 2014, 7:16 pm

Mrs So-and-so who I had for English in highschool, but who also taught history was a teacher I never had the nerve to correct.

She told u



naturalplastic
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05 Jun 2014, 7:29 pm

Mrs So-and-so who I had for English in highschool, but who also taught history was a teacher prone to making errors.

She told us several times that "the Mississippi River starts in Montana". In reality the Mississippi springs out of Minnesota (though its biggest tributary-the Missouri-does start in Montanna). Once when she pulled the string on a wall map of the USA to roll up the map she exclaimed in horror "why are they making the Mississippi stop in Minnesota!?!?!?!?!?. I know darn well the mississippi flows out of Montanna!". Even the map didnt convince her.

The one time in class we talked about Florence Nightengale and her pioneering work as the first military nurse . But the teacher added "strictly speaking she wasnt the first army nurse". Then she went on to tell about a pair of lady ancestors of hers who volunteered to nurse the wounded at the Battle of Gettysburg.

Just shook my head. Florence Nightengale's work was during the Crimean War of the 1850's which was BEFORE the American Civil War of the 1860's. So the teacher's ancestors could NOT have predated Florence Nightengale. It was just too complicated to raise my hand and try to correct her.