Déjà Vu in the Same Spot on a Different Floor

It’s clear that there is a “vortex of suck” running through the school where I work. Luckily it only seems to exist in two rooms.

My four bad students all turned in their homework this morning, more or less on time, but they were replaced this afternoon by four different students who now have to do the same homework for the same reasons. I blame the place they sit for this. And maybe the time.

I was teaching the same part of the unit at the same time of day (last period) to a different set of students, but once again, four students were talking and not doing the work. What surprised me, and I pointed it out to them, was they were sitting in the same place as the other four students–the back four chairs of rows 3 and 4–one floor down.

I checked their books and noticed they hadn’t done anything. One wasn’t even on the correct pages. I told them they had three minutes to finish everything or they’d get home work. One student went “okay okay okay okay” in a way that meant “fuck that and fuck you” and got him a lot of laughs from other students. I said he should talk to the four boys who’d just turned in homework if he thought there wouldn’t be consequences and then dared him to say “okay” again. He didn’t.

However, although they made a very manly try, none of the four actually finished the work, even after I told everyone to check the answers at the back of the book. (At that point they could have just copied the answers.)

Instead they got the assignment to copy a page in the textbook and then translate it into Japanese. To a young man they played dumb, and I had to explain the difference between “finish everything now” and “I’m finished because that’s everything I feel like doing right now.”

I’m now wary of those seats in that place. I’l probably have to move the students and, since it’s a religious school, call in an exorcist. (For the room not the students.)


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