You know, I think mum really has a gift for teaching. She has the knack of keeping the class fully attentive, well, not because of her strictness (though she IS indeed strict), but because she is an excellent story-teller, captivating the imagination of her young listeners.

Mum was sharing one of the funny antics of her students to me this afternoon, and I thought it would be nice to do a piece of writing on mum’s students and the happenings in her class.

Hmm. Let me see. It’s a little hard to describe the activities in class generally because mum always has new ideas for the pesky kids in her English tuition class. Her standard 5 class has been having “show and tell” sessions for the past few weeks…with children bringing things from gaudy hair bands to competition trophies to share with their friends. (I dropped in on the hair band show and tell…gosh, that girl had all sorts of head gears..Turned out to be 90% “show” and 10% “tell”.heh. ) Another class always bugs my mum for stories from the papers…heard mum telling them about the London bombings and the sole survivor of the recent helicopter crash to many oohs and aahs from her kids. Ah, luckily kids are still inquisitive despite the rigid school system.:-)

I remember a hilarious situation mum shared with us few weeks ago. They were doing some sort of essay on My Family and mum asked them to write down their parents names. Immediately, a hand shot up in the air. “Teacher! Teacher! I have no father! My father died because–” the boy proceeded to raise our litter bin and pointed at the “no smoking” sign on top of it. (I think he meant drugs). Mum told him it was OK not to write about his dad. The next moment, a cheeky boy called out, “Teacher! I have no mother too! My mother is in the US right now! So I don’t need to write about my mother ya?” Mum could not help smiling. Kids, kids.

A few days ago, mum came down with the flu. Poor thing, she still had to strain her voice hoarse in the tuitions which could not stop to wait for her recovery. Mum told me she was very touched when one of the standard one girls, Joanne, handed a neatly-folded tissue paper to her after seeing her sniffing away. Mum was a bit of a blur sotong and thought the girl had come to pass up her homework, but was so surprised that the thing she had in both hands was not an exercise book (probably full of mistakes), but a tissue paper! What joy teaching sensitive students like that.

Of course, there are some not-funny-at-all incidents that I still laughed at anyway. Like the one that happened in her Grade 6 Theory class today. This girl, well-known for “I forgot to do my homework”, gave such an incredulous excuse for not bringing her homework to class. “There! My brother la! He took my (THEORY) paper to play on the piano! That’s why I couldn’t find it! He put it on his table!”

Mum decided to teach her a lesson and called her brother immediately.

“Where got people want to play theory papers? I did not touch it and it’s on her own table!” came the brother’s reply, probably also surprised at the stupidity of the question.

Now the nonsense does not end there. When mum told the girl about her brother’s answer, the girl answered back in the most innocent tone she could manage—

“I DO NOT EVEN HAVE A TABLE!”

Students today…….>_^

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