posted on Apr, 15 2016 @ 01:47 AM
I was having a conversation the other day, and it brought up an odd experience I once had in school.
It was in the late 90's. I called my Mom to see if she remembered it, and she said that she did. She thinks today all the parents from that class
would have not let it continue. The internet wasn't in every home back then, and today it would have at least made it to Facebook. She isn't even
sure why she accepted it because it was so weird.
So, I was in jr. high (which was 7th-8th in my school). That year, they decided to not have an actual yearbook club as an extracurricular. Instead,
they chose 10-12 of us without asking if we even wanted to make the yearbook. We were the students who took "Honors" English classes. We ended up
doing English for the first half of the year, and the second semester we did 1/2 English and 1/2 Yearbook.
The teacher was the daughter of a well known and loved teacher at my school. It was her first year teaching. She was NOT a friendly teacher, and the
students quickly learned she was not the same as her mom.
The weirdness in her class started right away. She taught our Honors class as well as 2 regular English classes, and she did not do the same thing in
the other classes other than being mean.
English/Spelling/Vocabulary classes were pretty much the same format every year back then. You got a list of words each week, and we had to copy each
word 10 times, write down the definitions, and be tested on spelling and definition. Usually, both before and after this teacher, the spelling words
were in chapters in the vocabulary text book. We used to do 1 chapter per week, and the word list was the first page of each chapter. You defined
the words from a glossary at the back of the text book.
This class was not like that at all.
The teacher gave us a word list she had written out and copied. We were not given a text book, and we were told for homework we had to define the
words. Again, this was before widespread internet, and most people MAYBE had a standard dictionary in the house. If you were lucky, you had a set of
encyclopedias that wasn't decades out of date, lol.
Me and my parents spent a few hours trying to find definitions for the words. We couldn't find them anywhere. I called my best friend who was in my
class, and she had the same problem. Our moms decided they would send in notes about the problem and ask what dictionary version we should buy.
The next day, most students had notes too. The teacher freaked out on us...on the 2nd day of the school year too.
She wrote up a nasty reply to our parents. She said that it was unacceptable for our parents to coddle us. She said she was not the kind of teacher
who was going to go easy on us or take excuses on why we didn't do our work. She said that the next day we were to complete the word list, and she
didn't care if we made it up (seriously, her words)...that we were not to step foot in her class again with lame, cry-baby excuses and blank paper.
She said if the words weren't real words then we didn't need real definitions.
Parents were taken aback. Again, I don't understand why parents didn't say anything...which, looking back, I find to be the weirdest part.
That night, me and my mom sat down and actually came up with fake definitions for each word. Other kids did the same. The next day, we went around
the room and each got a word to define out loud. Nobody had the same definitions because we had all made it up. She didn't seem to care.
It only go weirder from there because each week, we continued to make it all up. I would always try to find the words, but none of them were ever in
the dictionary or encyclopedia. We had to make crossword puzzles with the words, and we swapped them to complete the crossword someone else made. We
had to give our definition list to the person too because, again, nobody had the same definitions. We had to learn how to spell the made up words.
We were tested on spelling, and we also had to define them on the tests. We all wrote down different definitions on the tests.
Sometimes she would mark your definition on the test as wrong, and we would get them right even though nobody was writing the same stuff.
We did that the entire year.
Years later, I came across old shool stuff when we cleaned out the attic. The word lists were in my notebook, and even though I was able to search
online then...the words weren't there. I wish I still had them to post here. I at least had validation back then that the words were actually fake.
At the time, we all assumed they were fake, but until I had a way to make sure, there was a chance they were just really advanced vocabulary. They
weren't real words though, for sure.
I still don't know if the teacher was crazy or if it was some weird experiment. Maybe it was some alternative teaching method she was trying out.
The only thing I know is that the words were fake...and looking back years later, it is super odd. I am also curious about our parents accepting it,
like I said. My mom even says she doesn't know why she didn't make a big deal out of it...or even talk to the principal. My classmates and I just
accepted it too...and it is so bizarre to me. It is also weird that it happened in a class specially made for that year, and the next year the class
was not structured with the yearbook. Like I said, the teacher taught other classes, and they had normal text books.
There is no way I would react that way if I had a kid come home with that kind of homework.
Do you guys have any similar experiences or weird classes from school? Did you ever have a teacher that was crazy? I just wonder if anybody else
ever had something like that happen.