Friday, September 23, 2016

Open House observations

Last night we attended our last high school Open House.  This is the event where the parents wander helplessly through their kid’s schedule, attending class for 12 minutes each.  We saw awesome classrooms and teachers.

This awesome classroom is not at our high school, but at one of
our local universities.

Quote on the wall (pick from more than 35 quotes!): 

            A crocodile cannot stick his tongue out.

This was the only one I could read without putting on my distance glasses.  This classroom also had a clock which had the names of Shakespeare plays substituted for the numbers.  It’s always time for Shakespeare! There were lots of posters on the wall referring to Irish writers.

Organic Chemistry
Poster on the wall, featuring a drawing of an otter:

            Do as you otter: wear safety goggles.

There is a plastic fruit hanging from the projector above us.  Younger Daughter tells me that is the “Lone Pear.”  There is a gigantic slide rule hanging in the back of the classroom, just to remind us how far we have come, I guess.

There are a lot of posters of the brain in this classroom, because it is also used by the psychology teacher.  At the front of the room, attached to the wall, there is a collection of sock monkeys.  A box of Mini-Wheats cereal is affixed somehow to the chalkboard.  Younger Daughter tells me the teacher often uses snacks to make points about economics.  What is your Marginal Oreo Utility?  If you have already eaten ten Oreos, how much would you pay for the eleventh Oreo?  When I took economics it was all about widgets, and there were no Oreos in sight.  Once again, the upcoming generation wins over my generation.

There is a nice collection of old license plates adorning the walls.  No quotes, but a few posters showing how physics and sports are related.  The teacher has a square meter built out of four meter-sticks bound together with duct tape.

Creative Writing: Poetry
There is a poster at the front of the class with this written on it:

            Sorry for your luck! 
Any questions? 
- Mr. [Teacher]

Also there are a number of posters of The Boss around the room.  Being taught poetry by a no-nonsense Springsteen fan is going to be good for my kid. 

AP Biology
We missed class, but ducked in just as the presentation was ending.  There was a huge number of posters of animals all over the classroom.

Physical Education
My husband attended this class while I went in search of the bathroom.  The kids are going to learn golf, badminton, and boating and water safety.  (The previous sentence was brought to you by the Oxford comma.)

This room was positively overtaken by cartoon characters all drawn on graph paper.  That’s good, because the color scheme of the room was that certain shade of puke green that many of our high school’s classrooms seem to feature.   The only quote I saw was this one from Yoda:

            Do or do not.  There is no try.

I'm not sure I agree with Yoda.  It might be a good quote for math class, but not so much for high school in general.  By that time, though, it was far too late in the evening to have a philosophical dispute.


Jan Falcona said...

For the record, I have always agreed with Yoda.

Jan Falcona said...

Also, I have always agreed with the Oxford Comma. Kudos for demonstrating its usefulness!

smalltownme said...

Here's my philosohpical dispute. I think "try" is hard to define. If you try something you really are doing it, aren't you? I TRY to play the piano. I am actually playing it, I am doing it, but I may not be really great at it. Hence, I am trying. So for me, to try means I am doing it but it may not have a positive outcome. What is the semantic difference.? It is that "try" implies some uncertainty which puts you in the wussy zone? Why? This is my after-a-glass-of-wine-philosophy so I might not be making sense. F it all, if you want to do something why not try it? It's just bad screenwriting, n'est-ce pas?

The Crislers said...

Your daughter's high school sounds excellent- or rather, her teachers sound excellent. I'm always amazed at how hard teachers work to make their subject matter interesting to their students. For the most part our kids have good teachers this year, and it's all I can do not to do the european-style kiss on each cheek every time I see them. So far I have managed to contain myself.

Karen (formerly kcinnova) said...

Oxford Comma and Yoda for the win! (My oldest son had that poster, and I believe it implies doing something 100% instead of, say, 20% effort.)
Love the Lone Pear and the economics of Oreos (and not just because there were mint-green stuffed Oreos in the narthex after church this morning).
I had planned on going to our penultimate parent night last week, but in the end my ankle was screaming at me post-cross-country meet and I spent 3 hours icing and babying it instead of tackling multiple buildings and stairs on a 12-minute schedule. However, I enjoy the parent nights for exactly the reasons you post here.