The Power of “Need”

Based on my interactions, it appears teachers have a faith-like belief in the “Power of Need” similar to the “Force” in Star Wars.  I could tell a teacher something as simple and straightforward as “the internet is down and unfortunately you can not get online at the moment” or “sorry, but due to the power outage you can not use your computer at this time”.  In their minds facts such as these are no match for the Power of Need. Almost without exception, teachers will counter with “but I really NEED to check my email” or ” but I really NEED to work on my test”.  As far as I can tell, they seriously believe that if they decide they NEED something enough it will materialize.  The other possibility is that they think I shut off the power grid for the city in an effort to prevent them from checking their email for Borders Coupons.  This is actually a strong possibility because more than a few of the teachers I’ve encountered seem to think that they are the center of the Universe and/or their respective classes are the foundation for which all academia is built.  I have many examples to illustrate the Power of Need……here is one from last week.

 

Teacher:  IT Guy, the copy machine is out of staples

IT Guy: I know, unfortuantely there was a problem with the shipment.  They won’t be here till tomorrow.

Teacher: But I really NEED them now

IT Guy: Sorry, but we don’t have any

Teacher: But I NEED them for an exam that I NEED to give today

IT Guy: I don’t know what you want me to do

Teacher: The exam is very important.  It counts for 15% of their grade and I really NEED to get this done

IT Guy: Oh, I didn’t know how much you NEEDED the staples.  Here, take the three cartridges I have been hiding in my pocket for the last two days so I could listen to you people incessantly whine about your NEED for staples.

Kids vs Teacher – The DVD Player

I think this story is pretty funny.  Most rooms in our school have the same brand of DVD players. Apparently a few of the kids figured this out and swiped remotes from other classrooms.  When a sub went to show a DVD the kids would let it run for a minute then fast forward it.  When the teacher would get up to fix it the kids would let it play.  As the teacher would begin to walk away the kids would fast forward it again.  This went on for about 20 minutes alternating between the kids fast forwarding the DVD and turning it off entirely.  Giving in to a teacher’s natural urge to ask for help the teacher enlisted the help of the two kids with the remotes.  Shockingly, they couldn’t pinpoint the issue and the problem persisted until the teacher gave in and granted a free period,

Kids 1 – Teachers 0

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More Final Exam Fun

Here is a story that happened today during teacher checkout.  In our grading system you have to name to your final exam FINAL, in all caps, for it to be recognized by the system.  I don’t feel this is too much ask but apparently I am mistaken.  I think it is important to note that we have had this particular grading program for 5 years now and have discussed the misnaming of the Final Exam in depth.  Incredibly, it has little to no effect.

Teacher: How come my Final exams did not show up on my grade verification sheets?

IT Guy: Did you name the Final Exam column “FINAL”

Teacher: Yep, I did them all the same and it showed up on my other classes.

IT Guy: Fine, I’ll look………………here is the problem.  Despite you adamently defending the fact that you put FINAL in all your columns this one clearly says EXAM.  Why did you decide to do one different than the other?

Teacher:  I don’t think I did.  Not sure how that happened.

IT Guy: Incredible. 

Teacher: Do you want me to redo it?

IT Guy: No, I want to do all your grades myself because you haven’t learned how this program works in the HALF A DECADE we have used it.

Teacher Tactic 1 :: Email Checks

One of my favorite teacher tactics is the email check.  An email check is when a teacher sends me an email from there classroom and at about the same time the message arrives in my inbox the teacher arrives in my office to see if I received it.  Here’s an example:

Teacher: IT Guy, did you get my email?

IT Guy:  No…..wait hold on……hits Send/Receive…….yes, you just sent it.   Why did you run down here?

Teacher: I wanted to see if you got it.

IT Guy: Why wouldn’t I get it?

Teacher: I wasn’t sure if I did it right.

IT Guy: What could go wrong?  All you have to push is SEND.  You’ve done it a thousand times.

Teacher: Yeah, I know

IT Guy: They why do you think this one will magically disappear

Teacher: I don’t know……..anyways did you read it?

IT Guy: Yep

Teacher: And?

IT Guy: I just responded as we were speaking………..did you get it?