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Thursday, June 11, 2015

12 Stereotypes This American Notices in a Language Class

I thought about doing this as a follow up to Sabes Que Me Saca de Mis Casillas, but I didn't. How anti-climatic was that explanation? Anyway, here are some things in Spanish class that I notice/irritate me, but probably are the same in any learning environment. I present to you: 12 Stereotypes This American Notices in a Language Class. (cue theme music)

1. Know-it-all's 

some ecards: know it all prescription
It's ok to be smart. It's ok to show off your intelligence. But when the teacher calls on someone else, and you are blurting out the answers, now you're just a jerk. 

2. Know-nothing's

We've been taking this class for several months and you still don't know the basics? Why do you even come to class?

3. Ask a question that was just answered

Sure, we all daydream and stop paying attention, but don't let everyone know that by asking a question out loud that was JUST asked or answered.

4. Hot breath people who talk a lot

Hot breath disturbing peopleIt is impossible to concentrate when the guy next to you has 3rd degree halitosis. They must have relief from the stinging of their own breath when they talk out loud, because they never seem to stop talking - directly to you. Lord forbid the teacher assign them as your partner for the next oral project.

5. Argue a point from your native language

I'm guilty of this one. The other language is different, that's why you have to take a class to learn it. If it was the same as your language, you wouldn't be in the class. Just accept the weird and difficult things that don't make sense in your language; and especially don't argue with the teacher. You will lose, because the language is not going to change.

6. Letting your phone ring

Rude caller in classroom
First, why is your phone not on vibrate? Second, either answer it or decline the call. Third, Why is your phone still ringing? Fourth, omg I cannot concentrate because your stupid phone is STILL ringing! Fifth, there goes the unusually loud and long ringtone alert that tells you you have a missed call. 

7. Telling long, boring, and irrelevant stories

I get it, you want to practice this new language, but if you are going to rant about your grandmother's favorite chicken recipe, at least wait until we are in the food or family sections, and not the airport vocabulary section.

8. Super loud side convos

This one can either be someone on the phone, or just two people in the class. Side convos are ok, but at least try to whisper or have an inkling of respect for everyone else. And when the teacher doesn't address the side convo and it gets progressively louder, that is a recipe for some serious passive aggression.

9. Ask a question and cut the teacher off before they can finish answering

Student: But teacher, why does subjunctive preterite continuous not have an article that agrees with the demonstrative plural gender?
Teacher: It's because when you conjugate the indefinite past, there is a conditional...
Student: ...I'll answer my question now, but incorrectly. So, in reality, I just cut you off for no reason, and now am I not only rude and impatient, I'm also showing how ignorant I still am on this subject.
Teacher: I'll finish my explanation, not mentioning that you just wasted everyone's time with your interruption.

10. People who don't follow directions

Confused about the assignment? Why don't you pay better attention then!The teacher gives oral directions. There are directions written on the board. There are directions written on the paper we are working on. Yet, there is always someone who does the assignment wrong and then is lost and confused when it's time to present the answers. 

11. Teacher doesn't let you read the whole sentence

We are in a language class. We should have every opportunity possible to read and speak and write. So, if we are doing an exercise and the teacher reads the entire sentence and wants the student to only fill in the blanks, they have now robbed the student of an opportunity for extra practice.

12. Teacher rants that no one gets

The teacher is the only one in the class who speaks the language fluently. So when they decide to go off on an emotional rant (funny, angry, or sad) none of us have any idea what you just said because you were excited and spoke 3 times faster than any of us comprehend.

I digress

I'm sure there are many more that I'm missing, but these jumped out at me first. And which ever ones you thought were stupid or irrelevant, it's because you do that. If you are learning a foreign language or a new skill, what have you noticed in your classes?

Location: Pamplona, Navarra, España


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