Inspired by this, I wrote this:
I’m sorry due to company restrictions I can’t teach you to the best of my ability.
I’m sorry if you do not understand something we’ve done in class, we’re not afforded the time to cover it in more details so you can conclusively understand its meaning.
I’m sorry the books cover topics in a vague, rushed way that only serves to hinder your learning process.
I’m also sorry the books must be finished in 12 weeks and that due to this timeframe we never do anything but pages and pages of work in class.
I’m sorry we’ve stopped playing games.
I’m sorry Grade Ones that one of your teachers doesn’t trust you enough to do work at home and so you must work tirelessly in class copying answers to questions in your workbooks from the board. Some of the students aren’t following the class as well as you are and there’s no time to go back and help them. I’m sorry if this bores you.
I’m sorry your workbooks stifle your creativity, your brilliant imaginations that all children have, in favor of Fill in the Blanks, Tick A, B or C and Listen and Repeat exercises.
I’m sorry you’re in the wrong level class because of parental pressure / a time conflict with another lesson / your grade / your age. (delete as appropriate)
I’m sorry one student is noisy, loud and disrupts every lesson to the detriment of your learning. He cannot be removed as you would not be removed from the class for doing the same thing. His parents pay for his lessons and therefore he must remain.
I’m sorry you get hot in class because you refuse to take your jacket off but I did not run up and down and up and down the hallway just prior to the lesson so I won’t be turning on the air conditioning for you.
I’m sorry you are saddened by a meaningless test that took me 5 minutes to make and handout and took you 20 minutes to fail. In the real world, that test is just paper destined for the recycling bin.
I’m sorry your friend touched your pencil and you felt that warranted tears.
I’m sorry the company won’t pay for my printer ink and so you can’t have fun worksheets and puzzles to do.
I’m sorry I don’t have fancier flashcards.
I’m sorry they won’t give me office supplies or a prize budget but I do my best and I will always make sure you get your stickers, presents and candy.
But most of all, dear students, I’m sorry the company’s unrealistic demands on you and your progress along with its business-like approach to your education has left me with a lethargic attitude towards teaching you. It’s hard to keep up a high level of enthusiasm when faced with the realities of expectation and for that, above all else, I apologise.
For more posts, check out:
- ‘But then how do you pay your strippers?!’ – Conversations with TCO Part 1 – March 21st 2012
- ‘Number 16 never fails to make me laugh…’ – Analogies – March 19th 2012
- ‘Oh, you’re Irish! Me too.’ – March 17th 2012
- ‘How do you feel about Pi?’ – March 11th 2012
- ‘I did NOT break the coffee machine!’ – March 10th 2012
- ‘I’ve taken up origami…’ – March 7th 2012
- ‘Wait, what’s a one-eyed Jack?!’ – March 5th 2012
- ‘You know, girls can ask guys to marry them on February 29th.’ – February 29th 2012
- ‘Watch out for the hedgehog!’ – February 26th 2012
- ‘But I don’t like God!’ – February 18th 2012
- And, of course, in the Index.